View Full Version : Did Kevin McHale save the Mavs from themselves?

11-07-2005, 01:10 PM
I recall Donnie mentioning on the day after the 2003 draft that the Mavs were high on this guy...luckily Minn nabbed him 3 picks ahead of us. Would we have taken him over Josh if they were both on the board...I'm glad we didn't get a chance to find out.

Wolves waive Ebi, acquire Dupree in trade

By DAVE CAMPBELL, AP Sports Writer
October 31, 2005
MINNEAPOLIS (AP) -- The Minnesota Timberwolves gave up on former first-round draft pick Ndudi Ebi, waiving the 21-year-old forward on Monday after acknowledging two years of work wasn't enough to prepare him for NBA competition.

Ebi's $803,600 salary for this season is guaranteed, but the Timberwolves saw little hope of him getting any playing time.

``That didn't sit very well with him,'' said vice president Kevin McHale, who made Ebi the 26th overall selection in the 2003 draft out of Westbury Christian High School in Houston. ``He really needs to play.''


``It didn't work out the way I wanted to,'' McHale said.

Minnesota also traded a future second-round pick to the Detroit Pistons for 6-foot-7 swingman Ronald Dupree, who averaged 3.2 points and 10.0 minutes over 47 games last season.

Coach Dwane Casey and his staff wanted another player capable of defending big shooting guards and small forwards, so they targeted Dupree -- who went undrafted out of Louisiana State and spent his rookie season with the Chicago Bulls.

After two-plus years of exhaustive, post-practice workouts with McHale, the 6-foot-9 Ebi was still not nearly polished enough for Casey to even consider bringing him off the bench. He's nimble and athletic, with a knack for blocking shots, but often looks lost on the court and has shown little instinct for playing consistent defense.

The Wolves recently asked for an exception that would allow them to send Ebi to the NBA's developmental league, but they were denied. Their request surprised Ebi, who has always been defiant about his ability to play with the big boys.

``I'm not a development league player. I'm an NBA player,'' he said earlier this month.

In two seasons with Minnesota, Ebi appeared in only 19 games -- averaging 2.1 points, 1.0 rebounds and 4.5 minutes. His career highlight came last April in a meaningless season finale against San Antonio, when he scored 18 points and grabbed a game-high eight rebounds in 28 minutes.

``He's a great kid,'' McHale said Monday night on a conference call with reporters. ``We spent a lot of time, so it's tough. But it's a basketball decision. You've got to do what's best for the team.''

The Wolves, who host the Portland Trail Blazers in the opener on Wednesday night, currently have Dupree, rookie forward Dwayne Jones and rookie guard Bracey Wright on their inactive list.

Teams can carry 15 players on their roster this season, in lieu of the old injured list, but three of them must be deactivated before each game. Jones and Wright are strong candidates for assignment to the developmental league.

11-07-2005, 04:01 PM
I was pissed the T-Wolves grabbed Ebi. I remember reading a bunch of reports right before the '03 draft came on how good he looked in the workouts. Guys were comparing him to Garnett and what not. I was hyped about him even without seeing him play but looks like the Mavs made the best move. I don't think the Mavs would've passed up on Howard though. He was projected to be a top 20 pick while Ebi was projected to be a 2nd rounder.

11-07-2005, 04:25 PM
Ebi could very well become our next Diop...

but I doubt it.