"New captain" Saunders has Wolves' trust in interim role

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Team owner Glen Taylor said: "We would like to thank Tom for his efforts and wish him all the best".

News came out late Sunday that the Timberwolves were firing Thibodeau, who was in the middle of his third season as the team's head coach and president. For the time being, assistant coach Ryan Saunders will take over for Thibodeau on an interim basis. He also ignored another offer from the Houston Rockets that reportedly included four first round draft picks.

"I'm hurt because Thibs is not here". "I'm coaching on the fly at the moment and I'm putting a lot of thoughts to paper now and really trying to organize those things".

"We still have hopes to get into the playoffs and I think with half the season left, let's see if this change will make a difference".

"Layden and Minnesota CEO Ethan Casson walked into Thibodeau's office and fired him after the victory over the Lakers, league sources told ESPN".

After a strenuous offseason and hard start to the regular season, the Minnesota Timberwolves have relived Tom Thibodeau of his coaching duties after three seasons.

Hoiberg has been a rumored target for UCLA's head-coaching job.

Nothing highlighted this divide more Thibodeau's handling of forward Jimmy Butler's trade request. Minnesota then tried to fix the problem by shipping Butler to the Philadelphia 76ers in exchange for young, excellent players in Dario Saric and Robert Covington.

The Wolves are said to be in search for a long-term candidate for the coaching job, and Wojnarowski reports that former Chicago Bulls head coach Fred Hoiberg and ESPN analyst Chauncey Billups are considered for the vacancy.

The transition won't be easy, especially in the beginning, but that's the National Basketball Association, and the Timberwolves have at least 41 games after Tuesday ahead of them.

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