The Minnesota Timberwolves are making an 11th-hour push before Thursday's trade deadline to try to reacquire Wolves legend Kevin Garnett in a swap that would send Thaddeus Young to Brooklyn, ESPN.com has learned.
Sources told ESPN.com the sides have engaged in serious discussions on the deal, which would ultimately require Garnett's approval even if the teams agree before Thursday's 3 p.m. deadline because Garnett possesses one of the NBA's six full no-trade clauses.
Garnett has insisted in recent weeks that he is not in the market for an in-season exit from Brooklyn, largely because he does not wish to displace his family in the middle of the season.
But the Wolves, sources say, hope that the chance to play out what might be his final NBA season as a member of the team that drafted him out of high school in 1995 -- and under longtime coach Flip Saunders -- could lead Garnett to reconsider.Such a trade, of course, would also mean the hypercompetitive Garnett leaves the Eastern Conference playoff race to join a team at the bottom of the West.
Saunders remains close with Garnett and is said to covet a reunion to bring back the most popular player in Wolves annals as a mentor to the many youngsters on the current roster, headlined by 2014's No. 1 draft pick Andrew Wiggins.
And in Young, Minnesota possesses a player the Nets have coveted for some time. Brooklyn GM Billy King drafted Young in Philadelphia and presumably would welcome his addition now as the Nets try to fortify their roster in search a playoff berth in the East.
The Los Angeles Clippers and coach Doc Rivers have been openly hoping Garnett would seek a buyout from the Nets before March 1 to become eligible to play in the playoffs for another team. But Garnett has left the impression he has little interest in a buyout.
"I haven't thought too much of my own personal [situation]," Garnett recently told Nets beat writers. "When that road comes, I'll cross it and I'll deal with it. A lot of things with [my] family situation and things, it's not just convenient to get up and move, to change things. It's not as convenient as it once was when I was younger. I have a lot more responsibilities and things to take into account."
In the same interview, Garnett insisted he was all-in with the 21-29 Nets, even though close friend Paul Pierce left Brooklyn over the summer to sign in free agency with the Washington Wizards.
In November, Garnett told Yahoo! Sports that he wants to buy the Timberwolves someday. But he has said little about how much longer he intends to play beyond this season, which is Garnett's 20th as a pro.
The Wolves selected Garnett with the fifth overall pick in the 1995 NBA draft and had him for 12 seasons before they dealt the best player in franchise history to Boston in 2007. Garnett won a championship in his first season with the Celtics, while the Wolves have missed the playoffs in each of the seven seasons since his departure.