The 2015-16 Minnesota Timberwolves season was the 27th season of the franchise in the National Basketball Association (NBA). Before the season, the Timberwolves announced that head coach and team president Flip Saunders will not coach the team this season as he continued his battle with cancer. Sam Mitchell was named interim head coach. On October 25, 2015, Saunders died and the Wolves announced that Mitchell as the interim coach for the rest of the season. Around the start of the season, the Timberwolves were the first team in NBA history with four players that were around 20 or younger, between Andrew Wiggins, Zach LaVine, Karl-Anthony Towns, and Tyus Jones to start out a season.[a]
It also marked the final season of Kevin Garnett's career in the NBA and his first time since 2006-07 playing with the Timberwolves. Playing 21 years in the league, Garnett previously played for the Wolves from 1995 to 2007 until being traded to the Boston Celtics, where he won a championship with them in 2008. Prior to his second stint with the Wolves, Garnett played two disappointing seasons with the Brooklyn Nets, one of them with fellow Celtics Paul Pierce and Jason Terry. Garnett is believed by many as the greatest Timberwolf of all time. He was also the last remaining active player from the 1995 NBA Draft.
The Timberwolves missed the playoffs for the 12th consecutive season, equalling the second-longest postseason appearance drought in NBA history of the Golden State Warriors between 1994-95 and 2005-06, only behind the Los Angeles Clippers[b] between 1976-77 and 1990-91. However, the Timberwolves had their second straight Rookie of the Year winner with #1 pick Karl-Anthony Towns earning the award.
Regular season game log
a That mark was shattered by the 2016-17 Phoenix Suns, who, in addition to holding four rookies between the ages of 18 and 20 to start out the season in Dragan Bender, Marquese Chriss, Tyler Ulis, and the undrafted Derrick Jones Jr., also held a second-year player named Devin Booker that played at the start of the season at age 19.
b The team originally played in Buffalo, New York as the Buffalo Braves up to the end of the 1977-78 season and later played in San Diego as the San Diego Clippers between the 1978-79 and 1983-84 seasons inclusive before becoming the Los Angeles Clippers.