Timberwolves remain patient on Kevin Garnett decision

LAS VEGAS -- As he watched his team's future compete for a summer league title, new Minnesota Timberwolves coach Tom Thibodeau was still waiting for an answer as to whether one of the last links to the franchise's past will still be a part of the team next season.

"We just have to give him time," Thibodeau told ESPN Monday night when asked about the future of Wolves star Kevin Garnett.

With the recent retirements of future Hall of Famers Kobe Bryant and Tim Duncan, questions about Garnett's future were reignited by comments made by Wolves owner Glen Taylor last week.

"I just asked him, 'Kevin, what are you going to do?' His answer was, 'I'd really like to play next year 'cuz I'd like to go out knowing we got into the playoffs,' " Taylor told NBA.com, regarding a conversation he had with Garnett last month. "Then he said, 'I don't know if I can.'

"I asked him, 'What does that mean?' And he said, 'I don't know.'

"So I asked the question, but I didn't get an answer that helped me. Yes, theoretically, he'd like to play. But he has some doubts of his knees holding up. I believe he told me exactly the truth."

Wolves second-year center Karl-Anthony Towns said he's stayed in touch with Garnett throughout the offseason and believes that he does want to continue playing but hasn't weighed everything out yet.

"I talk to him a lot," Towns told ESPN.com. "I don't know [what he's going to do]. He's earned that respect to choose whenever he chooses to place his shoes up. He's like a brother to me. If he laces them up again, we'll be great. If he closes them up and doesn't wear them again, he deserves [to make that choice].

"We're all waiting anxiously. Only God and KG know what they want to do."

Garnett, who turned 40 in May, is under contract for one more season, during which he's slated to earn $8 million. He started 38 games last season but averaged only 14.6 minutes and 3.2 points per game.