Early this morning, ESPN’s Marc Stein made his way to the Twittersphere and broke some news:
Word is Wolves plan to sign Grand Rapids PG Lorenzo Brown to a 10-day deal this week, likely in time for Wednesday's game against Boston
— Marc Stein (@ESPNSteinLine) January 27, 2015
Brown has some experience with the Wolves. After a successful run at NC State, he was picked by the Wolves in 2013 (52nd overall), but was cut shortly after the preseason to make room for more experienced point guard AJ Price to run the third string.
That said, I’ll be honest: I was a big fan of Brown in college, and am a big fan of this signing.
Brown is a 6’5 point guard (point guard!!!!) with decent vision and equally decent scoring instincts. Defensively, he’s not going to impact the game, but he’s probably an upgrade from Mo Williams and Zach LaVine. Brown is most dangerous when he gets out in transition, where he can be too quick to stay with if you try to press him.
He’s also very athletic, and if you sag off too much, he can excite a crowd.
Still, those are highlights of Brown in the D-League, and he was there (instead of the NBA) for a reason. After a 26-game stint last season with the Philadelphia 76ers, where he averaged 2.5 points and 1.6 assists per game, Brown was cut and spent most of 2013-14 with the Springfield Armor.
With Philadelphia, he shot the ball horribly, just over 30 percent from the field and 10 percent from deep. He wasn’t much better in college, either, shooting just 26 percent from 3-point range his final season at NC State. Shooting off the dribble and off the catch have both been issues for him, and his knowledge of how to run an NBA offense properly is still improving. He still has natural point guard instincts, and can run an offense, but there may be a few bumps along the way.
If signed, Lorenzo Brown will almost certainly replace Miroslav Raduljica, who has played just 5 out of a possible 10 throughout a pair of 10-day contracts. Letting go of Raduljica would mark the end of a strange, and possibly unnecessary move, as it originally had Jeff Adrien go in free agency after a much more successful (albeit still short and unproven) stint with the Wolves.
It’s unclear what happened with that ordeal, but that’s a discussion for another time. For now, the Wolves seem to have finally filled a big hole at point guard with a guy who should be able to do the job well.