Blogtable: The best place for Wiggins

Each week, we’ll ask our stable of scribes across the globe to weigh in on the most important NBA topics of the day — and then give you a chance to step on the scale, too, in the comments below.


BLOGTABLE: Best place for Wiggins | Playoff team due for a fall | Superstars without a wingman



VIDEO: Andrew Wiggins shines at the Summer League in Las Vegas

> You’re Andrew Wiggins. How could it possibly be better for you, short term or long term, to play in Minnesota rather than in Cleveland with LeBron? Explain, please.

Steve Aschburner, NBA.com: Uh, Minnesota is more like Canada, isn’t it? So that should help make Wiggins feel more at home with the Timberwolves. There’s this, too: With the Cavaliers, there would be an immediate tug o’ war between Wiggins’ pace of development and LeBron James’ readiness to win now. He’d be cast as the little brother whose game isn’t quite ready for prime time and there would be rumbles of impatience inside and outside the locker room. In Minneapolis, Wiggins will face none of that. The Wolves will be hitting the reset button with his progress and rookie-contract arc in mind. Zach LaVine, Gorgui Dieng and Shabazz Muhammad are raw and unready too, and even Ricky Rubio has work to do. Minnesota’s ambitions are more in line with what Wiggins can produce short-term. Long-term, if he’s as good as he projects, he’ll be fine anywhere.

Fran Blinebury, NBA.com: In an era when even established veteran players are looking for destinations where they can team up with other All-Stars, Wiggins’ talk boggles the mind. I guess I can see the ego part where the No. 1 overall pick in the draft wants to get the “top dog” experience. He certainly won’t get that as the No. 3 or 4 man in Cleveland behind LeBron, Kevin Love and Kyrie Irving.  But he also won’t sniff at the playoffs either.  If it’s unconditional love Wiggins is seeking, he should just buy a dog.

Jeff Caplan, NBA.com: Um, well, the summer months are beautiful in Minne … OK, this is going to be a tough sell. In Cleveland, Wiggins would play alongside LeBron and as a bonus he would be mostly free of the lofty expectations typical of a No. 1 overall pick. In other words, he wouldn’t be the focal point of the team. That’s all out the window in Minny, where a team desperate to get back into the playoffs for what seems like forever, will be looking to Wiggins to grow up quickly alongside Ricky Rubio, himself still growing into expectations following his unfortunate ACL injury.

Scott Howard-Cooper, NBA.com: The only way it’s better for me is because I get a lot more chances in Minnesota than I would have in Cleveland, especially right away. I am in the showcase for the Timberwolves, not a complementary piece for the Cavaliers after LeBron James, Kyrie Irving and maybe Dion Waiters are done with the ball. Because of that, though, there is no easy transition into the NBA, with LeBron’s return commanding so much of the spotlight that would normally go to my arrival as the No. 1 pick. And there is no opportunity to play alongside and learn about focus and preparation from James. And just imagine how many more seams I could have found in the defense if opponents had to worry about Irving and LBJ.

John Schuhmann, NBA.com: Well, he has an excellent chance to get to the playoffs more often than Kevin Love did in his six years in Minnesota, which could earn him some love in the Land of 10,000 Lakes. And he has a better chance of winning Rookie of the Year and putting up good numbers. But nothing beats competing for championships and there would have been no better player for Wiggins to play next to in his formative NBA years than LeBron James, who would have brought out the best in him, even if it was in a supporting role. We all know why that’s not going to happen and it’s hard to argue against the trade for Cleveland. But it’s still a shame that we won’t get to see the Wiggins/LeBron combo.

Sekou Smith, NBA.com: The one thing about playing in Minnesota for me, Andrew Wiggins, is the expectations for my rookie season are now much more manageable. Playing in Cleveland, alongside LeBron James and Kyrie Irving, would have cast me in that No. 3 role. And there is no guarantee I’d be ready for that immediately. Long term, I’d never have my own identity playing in LeBron’s shadow. Cleveland is his city. That’s never going to change. The only thing I could be there is a part of the ensemble. In Minneapolis the canvass is blank. I can make my own legacy with the Timberwolves. I won’t be playing in June anytime soon, of course. But I also believe in my heart of hearts that you have to start your career in a place where you are valued not only for what you bring from the start but also the potential of what’s to come. That happens for me, Andrew Wiggins, in Minnesota.

Lang Whitaker, NBA.com’s All Ball blog: You’re the man, now! If Wiggins stayed in Cleveland, he’d have played behind LeBron and Kyrie for a while, maybe even as long as they were on the same team. But with the T-Wolves, Wiggins has the opportunity to take a lot of shots and play meaningful minutes right off the bat. This is probably a good and bad thing — as a rookie, having the opportunity to be a third option would obviously be easier than having to be focus of defenses night after night and having the chance to develop slowly. But now we’ll find out exactly what we’re working with. Let’s throw Wiggins in the pool and see if he can swim.

40 Comments

  1. Dyron from Belize # 1 Spurs fan says:

    Did you people not read my last comment from the Kevin Love story. Lebron helped the kid because he would have not have flourished on that team. Wouldn’t even have gotten touches and plays called. Cleveland’s second team will be controlled/headed by Waiters. I don’t know if you have noticed but Irving and Waiters were allegedly not good locker room guys and also Kevin Love. Bennett could have been much better if not for guys wanting to hog the ball and get paid or catch the all star team rather than be a team guy.

    LOOK I SAY ONCE AGAIN:

    Dyron from Belize # 1 Spurs fan
    August 7, 2014 at 11:56 am
    It would be funny to see Anthony Bennett play the way Love did and Wiggins play out of his mind like the Paul George type player he is….. and then that team make the Playoffs!!!! something love couldn’t do! the T-Wolves will be fine. Just wait and see. They are now a way better team. If they were in the East I would call them a playoff team but the West tough.This team will do great because there will be no ego (K Love) and a humble core of guys.

    PG- Rubio/ Mo Williams/ JJ Barea
    SG-Wiggins/ Kevin Martin/ Shved
    SF-Brewer/ Mbah a Moute/ Buddinger
    PF- Bennett/ Dieng/
    C- Pekovic/ Turriaf

    Coach Flip Saunders and Sam Mitchell

    I’m telling you and I’m calling it! This team will be fine. They will be a .500+ team better than Kevin Love made them.

    Dyron from Belize # 1 Spurs fan
    August 7, 2014 at 11:19 am
    Those big 3 Miami Heat teams were better than this one Lebron have with Love. Mark my words. Other than thoses guys from his heat teams nobody on the team Lebron is building have any experience at all and when the time comes you will see, You don’t win with 3 All Stars you win with real super stars Wade, Bosh, Bron, Duncan, Parker,Ginobli… and guys that make big plays Def and Off (Diaw, Ray Allen, Danny Green, Mills, Miller, Battier) I say Kyrie and Love are big play guys but clearly are not leaders to take their team to the top simply because they couldn’t and didn’t. The only star on this team is Lebron and I am being completely objective here as a basketball fan.

    Kyrie and Kevin Love are over rated; their stats ballooned because they were ball hogs and selfish players with an intent of Donald Sterling’s box office profit and no winning! As long as their stats are stuffed the wins don’t matter and that’s why my Spurs win! If Paul George and Lance and that team didn’t have an ego their stories would have been different! No darn discipline

  2. Eddy Griff says:

    He is getting a chance to develop on his own. Just like Jabari parker has the same chance. Im sure this will help the league because they can see parker and wiggins guard each other and battle rather than parker have to guard lebron and all that when they play each other. Plus anybody remember andre igoudala?? He had AI already there to “help him develop” and that stunted his growth. Iggy had the skillset to be a great player but playing with AI early on didnt help him develop at all.

  3. steve` says:

    we will love him here in Minnesota if he lives up to his billing and doesn’t have a fat head which he doesn’t seem to he looked good in summer ball just hope the wolves keep bennet as he looked better in summer league even though Thompson would be a good one also the wolves would be fun to watch trade barrea brewer for another power forward like Thompson than have Thompson and bennet as your powere forwards run run run

  4. Sam says:

    What a completely ignorant comment by Steve, but not surprising. He continually bashed the Raptors last year and has clearly never even been to Toronto, because if you had been here before you’d see that Toronto is actually a lot like Chicago and not Minnesota. That is where Wiggins grey up, Vaughan, suburb of Toronto, not in a smaller city. Nothing against Minneapolis, I have relatives there and it’s nice, but it’s nothing like Toronto.

    Steve, come to Toronto some time and broaden your ignorant mind.

  5. andrew wiggins would be a good choice to play with serious minnesota dog that waited for years quipo oprtunidad would have the confidence and development and become a superstar quickly have no doubt Rookie of the Year 2014

  6. Adrian says:

    It would be nice to play against the great players, it will test and also improve your playing style it will help you to put yourself to a hard practice, so that one day you’ll be a star player :)

  7. Charly says:

    Is it normal that every single time I read something from steve I (best case) strongly disagree or (more often) just find him extremely annoying

  8. Nathaniel Curtis says:

    you guys are blowing Steve’s comments WAY OUT of PROPORTION!!! He is referencing the fact that Wiggins is from Canada/The North-West, so the climate, culture, area, people, exec, etc… Would “feel” more like “Home”… And for a young guy, that might be a bit more “settling”… JEEEEEZZZZZZ!!! DON’t READ INTO and make /try to make something out of NOTHING!

    • knocka says:

      I’m sorry, but that comment was straight up stupid. Wiggins is from Toronto, Canada. Google it. Nothing at all like Minnesota. The Greater Toronto Area has well over 5 million people living there, 50% of which are people of colour. Tell me how that is anything like Minnesota. As for weather and climate, stop saying stupid things. It’s not even comparable. I realize he was trying to be light in his comment, but that’s just silly

      • Nick says:

        Minneapolis has a very very diverse culture as well… but then again our mayor isnt addicted to drugs, so you are right, nothing alike;)

  9. dwade4life says:

    better for him to go to minny, he has all the potential to be the next star for NBA. Plus he get’s to be the alpha dog for that team who is continuing to rebuild, maybe after 3-4 years they will be a contender and if he gets lucky after 5-6 years a championship or an MVP award.

  10. Spurs Fan says:

    ! Go Wiggins Go !

  11. hell no says:

    I Like Wiggins now. Because he likes to play “AGAINST” great player unlike Lebron(LeChoke,LeCramp etc.) who likes to “WITH” great players in the league. the man has no balls to compete with great talents.

  12. philaw123 says:

    Anyone who thinks Wiggins would do well with the Cavs needs to remember the tale of Darko. Darko Milicic was the number 2 overall pick in 2003, behind LeBron. He was drafted by a fully loaded Detroit Pistons team that was contending for a championship. He was drafted ahead of talents like Carmelo Anthony, Dwyane Wade, Chris Bosh and more. He also won a title ahead of all of those players. But if you ask him, I’m sure he would’ve preferred hooking up with a team where he would have had a chance to develop, even if that meant losing at first. Losing games while developing would be so much better than being the “Human Victory Cigar” of a championship team.

  13. philaw123 says:

    Anyone who thinks Wiggins would do well with the Cavs needs to remember the tale of Darko. Darko Milicic was the number 2 overall pick in 2003, behind LeBron. He was drafted by a fully loaded Detroit Pistons team that was contending for a championship. He was drafted ahead of talents like Carmelo Anthony, Dwyane Wade, Chris Bosh and more. He also won a title ahead of all of those players. But if you ask him, I’m sure he would’ve preferred hooking up with a team where he would have had a chance to develop, even if that meant losing at first. Losing games while developing would be so much better than being the “Human Victory Cigar” of a championship team.

  14. edison says:

    Miami heat

  15. Steve…really. I used to think you were intelligent but your comment about about Minnesota being like Canada is about the dumbest thing I’ve read. Based on your geographical logic you probably think Cleveland is like Miami since its further south than Minneapolis. FYI, do some research next time or simply don’t comment. Sarah Palin thought you could see Russia from her back door and now we have you being geographical challenged.

  16. Steve, I used to think that you made intelligent points. The comment that Minnesota is like Canada has to be one of the dumbest things I’ve read. I suppose Cleveland is like Miami since its further south than Minneapolis in your strange logic. Yes, Cleveland has the better team with LBJ. However, the Minneapolis advertising market has multiple Fortune 500 companies gives Wiggins a tremendous marketing advantage. If you are still confused do some research next time.

  17. jumppong says:

    Lebron ruined it Wiggins will be the next Face of the NBA along with Jabari Parker.

  18. Uncle Daddy says:

    If what he says is true he wants to be the main guy on a team, then Minnesota is the place to be. I just hope he is ready to be on a team that is in serious build mode, I don’t think they are in complete re-build, but they need a focal point and few more good pieces. I would love to see them get someone like Harrison Barnes to play along beside Wiggins.

    • hell no says:

      Harrison Barnes, really? The guy is not a consistent perimeter shooter, can’t even space the floor. and plus it will be another man at the wing spot.

  19. harriethehawk says:

    Wiggins is chapped that he has been tossed aside. But I love his diplomacy Hey dude, make some really good lemonade out of those lemons that have been thrown at you, when you get to Minnesota. Best wishes.

  20. dustydreamnz says:

    I can see positives to both situations….it’s a no lose for me.

    • hell no says:

      yeah, i’m with you sir. the cavalier is on a “WIN NOW” mode. and the T-wolves are on rebuilding process, it just how we see the result on the 2014-15 season. .

  21. Dave says:

    last I checked Canada was part of North America, pull you head out

  22. If I would be wiggins… I would let go of ROY worries and take this season as a cavalier. I’d be in the playoffs and competing and by that I learn on a much higher pace how to Win than in Minny. Id start as a winner, that would help me the most long term.
    And next year, when K.Love arrives anyway as it seems (he stated he wants to join cle, by trade or as a FA), I could demand a trade. No one would be angry or disappointed as the cavs get Love PLUS get something for me in a trade to almost any build-up team. Then I’d take my talents and some winning mojo to a team where I am the main dog.
    Nothing against Minnesotta. But I believe whit this scenario I would develop the quickest.

  23. yikes says:

    really,aschburner? i do hope you’re native american… ’cause your name sure doesn’t sound like it. that’s a lot of hate you got for foreigners and their cultures, considering the US was built on immigration

  24. Athnasia Columbus says:

    As good as Wiggins is, if he works hard on his game he will be great anywhere! Long wing span, great jumping ability, quick, agile all the natural gifts / Already a very good defender / Good Coaching in the NBA is all that is needed!! I am willing to bet he will be very successful!!

  25. jOLAN says:

    Wiggins to Minn. just makes so much sense to me. For the Cavs, Lebron gets a chance to win right away again, and Love is a great 2nd option. He helps that team offensivly so much. For Wiggins, he gets to learn to be the number 1 guy off the bat. If he plays behind Irving and James for 3-4 years, he may never develop into a player that can carry his team. He wont ever get the chance to learn. If I was Wiggins, I would want to go to the Wolves too. Way better for him long term.

  26. “Minnesota is more like Canada”? Americans ignorance of the world outside their own borders is mind-boggling. As for F.Blineburys comment…Wiggins gets criticized for not being an alpha dog. Now he gets flak from Franny for his ego. Go figure.

    • hell no says:

      He’s referring to the weather. Cold weather? Sometimes stupidity has no limits

      • miguelamor22 says:

        Yeah cause Cleveland is so warm in the winter. Way to call someone out as stupid though, while at the same time pointing out your own stupidity. Think. Type.

  27. Neumms says:

    Sekou Smith is right. There’s something to be said for the career arc of Durant and Jordan. The Yankees weren’t competing for titles when Derek Jeter came up, either. Has there ever been a situation where a #1 pick lands with that kind of championship pressure? James Worthy, maybe, but the Lakers weren’t demanding him to be a star. I’m a Wolves fan, but maybe Wiggins is showing a level-headed outlook. Grow into the pressure. Learn how to lead. And you know, when he’s ready to carry a team to the finals, he can probably negotiate an escape clause.

  28. triggerhappy says:

    Again Fran …

    How could wiggins be behind LeBron and Kyrie and Excuse Me Kevin Love? Wiggins and Love cannot be on the same team if you talk about Cavs and Wolves Trade … What do you think?

  29. Keeper says:

    Of course an NBA championship is the ultimate prize, but what’s being undermined is the journey. Wiggins want to reach his full potential and earn his place in this league. I like it.