The Minnesota Timberwolves did not match a three-year, $28 million offer sheet for Tyus Jones by Tuesday’s deadline and the guard is now headed to the Memphis Grizzlies.
“We sincerely thank Tyus for his contributions on the court and Tyus and the entire Jones family for their genuine impact on the Twin Cities community,” Timberwolves president of basketball operations Gersson Rosas said in a statement Tuesday night. “We wish them nothing but the best in Memphis.”
Minnesota had two days to match the Grizzlies’ offer sheet. Among the reasons for not doing so, according to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski: The Timberwolves are pursuing max salary-cap space in 2020 free agency.
Memphis, meanwhile, is using most of a $9.3 million midlevel exception on Jones, according to ESPN’s Bobby Marks.
With the Grizzlies, the 23-year-old point guard will get a chance to develop behind No. 2 overall pick Ja Morant. De’Anthony Melton, 21, could be a viable third point guard in time. The 23-year-old Jones averaged 6.9 points and 4.8 assists for the Timberwolves during the 2018-19 season.
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Jones was the 24th overall pick in the 2015 draft by the Cleveland Cavaliers, but was traded to the Timberwolves for two second-round picks. During his career in Minnesota, he has averaged 5.1 points and 3.3 assists.
The 6-foot-2 Jones had spent his entire four-year NBA career with the Timberwolves. The Cleveland Cavaliers selected him out of Duke with the 24th overall pick in the 2015 draft but immediately traded him to Minnesota.
Jones grew up in Apple Valley, Minn., and won a state title with Apple Valley High School in 2013. He went on to play college basketball at Duke University and led the Blue Devils to a national championship in 2015. Now that Jones and Derrick Rose, who signed with Detroit in free agency, are gone, the Timberwolves are left with Jeff Teague, Shabazz Napier and Tyrone Wallace as the point guards on roster.
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