Minnesota's Kevin Garnett, in his first public comments since last month's Latrell Sprewell trade, told ESPN.com that he is impressed by the acquisitions of Sprewell and Sam Cassell and optimistic about the Timberwolves' prospects with their deepest team ever.
"I only really know (Sprewell) through the All-Star Game, but I'm definitely excited to have him," Garnett said. "With him and Sam, we really had an aggressive offseason and now it's up to us as an organization to get it done. I'm really excited because there's not too many people who have been with the Timberwolves as long as I have."
With Garnett entering the final season of his famed $126 million contract, Minnesota made a flurry of moves after the draft in hopes of halting a run of seven straight first-round exits -- but also to convince Garnett that it can surround him with the help necessary to be a title contender. In addition to the considerable expense of parting with the soon-to-expire contract of Terrell Brandon to get Sprewell, the Wolves also signed free-agent center Michael Olowokandi to replace Rasho Nesterovic.
Garnett, though, stopped short of saying he intends to sign a contract extension before or during the season. The Wolves would be considered heavy favorites to re-sign Garnett next summer if he elects to test the free-agent market, given his deep bond with the franchise that drafted him in 1995 and the club's ability to pay him more than any other team. But, as seen this summer with New Jersey's Jason Kidd, Garnett figures to give strong consideration to testing the free-agent market to explore his options and see how other teams operate.
"I don't know at this point," Garnett said. "I still have a year to go and a lot of other things to think about."
As for his future with Team USA, Garnett remains open to the possibility of joining the national team for next summer's Olympics in Greece. A mainstay with Team USA in previous competitions, Garnett opted to bypass next month's Olympic qualifying tournament in Puerto Rico.
"I haven't ruled anything out," Garnett said. "I'm not going to commit to it right now, but if I'm needed things could happen."