Wolves happy to have 1st-round pick back 26 Apr 12

Minneapolis, Minn. (AP) – The Minnesota Timberwolves have found one reason to celebrate despite this rough finish to the season.

Thanks to Utah, the Wolves will have a first-round pick in the NBA draft this summer. The Jazz clinched a playoff spot by beating the Phoenix Suns Tuesday. They owe the Wolves a first-rounder for the Al Jefferson trade in 2010. The pick was lottery-protected, meaning the Jazz would have kept it if they missed the playoffs.

Wolves All-Star Kevin Love said after practice on Wednesday he ought to send a gift Jefferson’s way.

The Wolves must give up their own first-rounder this year to finally close the deal that acquired Marko Jaric from the Los Angeles Clippers in 2005. The Clippers have since traded the pick to New Orleans.