Blake Griffin, Hasheem Thabeet, James Harden, Tyreke Evans, Ricky Rubio, and Jonny Flynn - those are all players drafted before Stephen Curry back in '09. Oh, and the latter two were both taken by the Timberwolves, making them the ultimate ball droppers of the Draft Night. So why did Minnesota pass up on Curry two times? Steph himself offered an explanation.
“My guy David Kahn. I don’t know where he’s at right now. I don’t know if that ever came out. There’s a story. Everyone knows how much I love golf and play it in my spare time or whatnot. I think the word on the street was that he didn’t draft me because Minnesota is cold and I wouldn’t be able to play as much golf so I’d be miserable.”
Stephen Curry, The Ringer
You see why the T-Wolves parted ways with Kahn back in '13. Not taking Steph was just a drop in the ocean in a series of Kahn's questionable decisions as the team's president of basketball operations. But the way he rationalized this one is hilarious.
Building an indoor golf course would've been a smarter investment than taking both Rubio and Flynn over Curry. Ricky even had a fairly decent six-year run with the Wolves, but Flynn was a flat out bust. He only appeared in 134 games with Minnesota, before getting traded to the Houston Rockets. And the guy they passed up on? He's a 3x NBA champion and a 2x regular-season MVP while becoming the greatest shooter the league has ever seen.
In a piece he wrote for Sports Illustrated, Kahn offered a different side of the story, saying he was told by Curry's agent that Dell Curry didn't want the Timberwolves drafting his son. Now, if that's the case, and if Dell was exercising his father powers Lavar Ball style, I can see how that can affect an executive's decision. But then again, it may as well be about steering the attention from the real explanation. Because David was all in on Rubio, and the Wolves' scouting report on Flynn was clear - he was the best point guard in the class.
“We didn’t have a single point guard on the roster, and our staff had ranked him No. 1 among all point-guard prospects for not only his on-court play but also his strong leadership qualities, a significant team needs.”
Now I'm not going to draw my own conclusions. I'm just going to say this; if the Timberwolves did pass on Curry because he didn't want to be there in the first place, that's a valid reason. It may have ended up working out for both parties, but I see why they were timid. But if Steph's explanation is true, and if the Timberwolves were indeed swayed away from Curry because of golf, then kudos to David Kahn - he's the proud owner of NBA's stupidest decision award.