Budinger hasn't enjoyed much personal success during his injury-plagued tenure with the Timberwolves. Since 2012-13, Budinger has appeared in just 64 games.
With the 'changing of the guard' at the head coaching position, gone is Rick Adelman and in his stead sits the winningest coach in franchise history: Flip Saunders. Budinger was a player that Adelman advocated for trading for when the Wolves sent their first-round pick to Houston to nab Chase. Budinger played less than ten games in his debut season before suffering a lateral meniscus tear. He returned to the court by the end of the year, but struggled to return to form. That has been the case throughout his Timberwolves career.
In camp this summer, he has said that he is feeling good and his health isn't something he's even thinking about--he's just getting out on the court and playing his game.
In limited action, he's looked good. The problem remains that the Wolves have Kevin Martin, Andrew Wiggins, Zach LaVine, Corey Brewer and Shabazz Muhammad all vying for valuable minutes at those wing positions. Add in the fact that J.J. Barea & Mo Williams can play off the ball as two-guards and it further limits Budinger's court time.
As such, it should come as no surprise that the Wolves are shopping him. The question is...what would they want in return. I assume they're doing this not only to clear some room on the wings, but also so they can keep Glenn Robinson III as well as J.J. Barea (who many believe the Wolves are trying to trade or would/could waive). According to reports, J.J. Barea has been one of the best players early in the training camp and opinions on the small guard may be changing.
The Wolves would probably look to acquire a draft pick and/or a player on a non-guaranteed deal that they could waive. Two teams that are reportedly registering interest: the Detroit Pistons and the Houston Rockets. Both teams are reportedly a little weary of taking on Budinger's $5million salary for this year in addition to his $5million player option next season.
The Rockets are looking for contributors after losing out on Chris Bosh as well as losing Jeremy Lin & Omer Asik to trades...AND Chandler Parsons in free agency. Houston is also (obviously) where Budinger began his professional career. The other (Detroit) just lost Jodie Meeks to an injury for the next two months and are looking for a replacement that can provide a similar skill set on the wings.
Stay tuned for updates and more information. Thanks for reading HOWL!