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Breaking down the Wolves coaching search by dollars

Timberwolves Kahn Basketball

Minesota Timberwolves president David Kahn speaks at a news conference in Minneapolis, Wednesday April 13, 2011. Kahn says owner Glen Taylor has assured him he will return next season. But Kahn declined to discuss the job status of coach Kurt Rambis on the day the Timberwolves wrapped up another disastrous season. Kahn spoke to the media hours before the Wolves were scheduled to host the Houston Rockets in the season finale. (AP Photo/The Star Tribune, Richard Sennott) **SOFT OUT MINNEAPOLIS-AREA TV NOT TV, MAGS OUT. **


It’s all about the Benjamins.

With the Minnesota Timberwolves interviewing a roughly everyone west of the Misissippi River for their open coaching position — Don Nelson, Larry Brown, Rick Adelman, Terry Porter, Bernie Bickerstaff, Mike Woodson — it is hard to get exactly what they are looking for. Sure, GM David Kahn said he wanted someone with “uptempo DNA” but not everyone on that list fits that criteria.

Over at the Star Tribune, beat writer Jerry Zgoda suggests who gets the job may come down to how much the Bucks are willing to pay.

If they’re willing to pay $4-5 million a year, the pick clearly seems to be former Houston coach Rick Adelman, a candidate who meets all of Kahn’s criteria for style of play, winning track record and the unspoken but important Kevin Love Factor.

If their ceiling is $3 million -- plus bonuses -- it’s Don Nelson. Working down from there, in the $2 million range and in descending order, your picks are Mike Woodson, Bernie Bickerstaff (and Son) and then Terry Porter.

The Wolves just had to pay (or are paying) the remaining two years and $4 million owed Kurt Rambis, which may impact their decision. As Zgoda noted, Adelman interviewed for this job over the phone, not flying out to Minnesota, which is not exactly a sign everyone is serious about that happening.

I’d tell you who I think the frontrunner is if I had any clue, but I’m not about to try and guess what Kahn’s next move will be, save that a couple more first-round interviews are expected.