Shabazz Muhammad On Defense For Minnesota Timberwolves

NBA Rumors: Shabazz Muhammad Cut Loose By Minnesota After Gibson Signing

NBA rumors state Shabazz Muhammad is an unrestricted free agent after the Minnesota Timberwolves renounced his rights on Sunday (July 2). This means that Muhammad goes from being a restricted free agent with a qualifying offer over to a player who can sign with any other NBA franchise. A report by basketball analyst Chris Haynes states that the Timberwolves decided to pull the qualifying offer in order to move forward as a franchise.

Reading between the lines, this decision basically means that the Minnesota Timberwolves now feel that they can compete just fine without Shabazz Muhammad on the roster. The Wolves had extended a qualifying offer of roughly $4.2 million to Muhammad that he could have accepted, but he decided to see what might be available in free agency. As a restricted free agent, the Wolves were also afforded the ability to match any contract offer he received from another team.

When the Wolves traded for Jimmy Butler of the Chicago Bulls, it almost made Muhammad unnecessary to the roster. Butler does a lot of the same things as Muhammad but does then at an All-Star level. It basically meant that Muhammad could be buried on the bench searching for playing time or the Wolves could look to deal him if he ended up accepting that qualifying offer. Now the problem is solved by removing that offer from the table.

Earlier in the day, NBA rumors indicated that the Minnesota Timberwolves had agreed to a two-year, $28 million contract with big man Taj Gibson. There is also an agreement in place with free agent point guard Jeff Teague, who gives the Wolves yet another weapon as they approach the 2017-18 NBA season. Adding those two players to a roster that already includes Jimmy Butler, Karl-Anthony Towns, Andrew Wiggins, Gorgui Dieng, and Nikola Pekovic could make the Wolves a very formidable team in the Western Conference.

After entering the NBA with a lot of buzz following a great season at UCLA, Shabazz Muhammad has dropped off the radar for a lot of basketball fans. In four seasons with the Timberwolves, he played 235 games, mostly off the bench. Muhammad has career averages of 9.9 points and 2.8 rebounds and has shown flashes of talent, but was never able to find a starting job with the team. There should soon be a lot of NBA rumors about teams looking to sign him and see what he could do, possibly including the New York Knicks, Los Angeles Lakers, and Brooklyn Nets.

[Featured Image by Matthew Stockman/Getty Images]

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