Reports: Timberwolves fire Thibodeau
Jan 6, 2019; Minneapolis, MN, USA; Minnesota Timberwolves head coach Tom Thibodeau calls a play during the third quarter against the Los Angeles Lakers at Target Center. Mandatory Credit: Brace Hemmelgarn-USA TODAY Sports
The Minnesota Timberwolves fired head coach and president of basketball operations Tom Thibodeau, according to multiple reports Sunday, hours after the team beat the Los Angeles Lakers 108-86.
According to The Athletic, Ryan Saunders will serve as the interim head coach, and general manager Scott Layden will remain in his position for now.
ESPN reports owner Glen Taylor is seriously considering Fred Hoiberg — who worked in Minnesota’s front office before becoming Iowa State’s head coach in 2010 — as either the head coach or GM in the future.
Thibodeau, 60, joined the team in 2016 and went 96-107 in two-plus seasons, including 18-21 this season. Last season, he helped the Wolves to a 47-35 record and their first playoff appearance in 14 years, but the team struggled to open this year amid Jimmy Butler’s trade demand.
After starting 4-9, Minnesota won 10 of its first 13 games after Butler was traded on Nov. 11 to get back above .500. But the team has gone 6-9 since then, including a stretch of nine losses in 13 games.
Thibodeau is 351-246 in eight career seasons as an NBA head coach, after leading the Chicago Bulls from 2010 through 2015. He won Coach of the Year honors in his first season in Chicago after leading the Bulls to a 62-20 record.
Hoiberg, 46, replaced Thibodeau in Chicago and went 115-155 with the Bulls before being fired after a 5-19 start to this season.
—Field Level Media