Another trusted member of head coach Flip Saunders’ inner circle has joined the Timberwolves staff, and he’s got a familiar name.
Minnesota announced Tuesday that Ryan Saunders had been named an assistant coach, joining David Adelman, Sidney Lowe and Sam Mitchell on his father’s bench. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.
Ryan Saunders, 28, spent the last five seasons as an assistant with the Washington Wizards after playing at and graduating from the University of Minnesota, where he also was an assistant coach for one season under Tubby Smith.
"Ryan brings a unique skillset of player development, analytics and team preparation to our team," general manager Milt Newton said in a statement. "He played a key role in the development of Washington’s rising stars John Wall and Bradley Beal, and he served as the primary scout last season as the Wizards won their first playoff series since 2004-05. His ability to develop young talent, as well as his statistical analysis and game preparation techniques, will be an extremely valuable addition to our team."
The younger Saunders is considered to have an analytical background and is expected to bring a more metric-based approach to the Timberwolves coaching staff. He is the co-founder of the in-game statistical-probability program Gametime Concepts, which is used by several NBA and college basketball teams.