The Minnesota Timberwolves’ season is over, which means it’s time to start assessing how each player on the roster performed this year. First to step under the microscope is Aaron Brooks, the veteran point guard who played limited minutes for Minnesota this year.
There were very low expectations for Brooks this year. With Jeff Teague as a proven starter and Tyus Jones as a promising young prospect, Brooks wasn’t needed on a game-to-game basis. Instead, he was meant to provide veteran leadership and act as a solid substitute in case of injury. Having played under Tom Thibodeau previously in Chicago, Brooks was also supposed to help implement his system.
Brooks panned out about as expected. He played in just 32 games and was on the court for over 10 minutes in a single game just eight times. Brooks started just one game, due to an injury to Teague, although he still played just 13 minutes.
The majority of his playing time came in garbage time, meaning his playing was inconsequential. In his few truly meaningful minutes, Brooks was solid. Although he doesn’t have the talent of Teague or Jones, he was still able to hold down the fort.
Aaron Brooks making this 3⃣ look all casual. pic.twitter.com/Ggzq8qhSlG— Timberwolves (@Timberwolves) November 26, 2017
In March, Brooks had eight points on 2 of 6 shooting against the Philadelphia 76ers. He hit two three’s on four attempts and was plus-15 for the game. Although it came in a loss, this was the game in which Brooks most positively impacted the Timberwolves.
This game showcased some of his strengths. Brooks is one of the few Wolves players that are not in the regular rotation that can still go out and get buckets. He’s a confident shooter and doesn’t take plays off.
Like many Timberwolves players, one of Brooks’ worst games was in Minnesota’s loss to the Utah Jazz at the end of the season. In the 24-point blowout, Brooks played 16 minutes and was a minus-16 for the contest. While he had a season-high 12 points, it came at the expense of his teammates. Brooks is not talented enough to play hero iso-ball, and yet turned down pass after pass. His defense was ineffective and he quickly racked up five fouls.
While no one expected Brooks to save the game, this performance showed why he spent this season on the bench. Brooks is a liability on defense and has no chance at stopping some of the top guards in the league.
Brooks enters unrestricted free agency this summer. At 33-years-old, it’s unlikely he’ll get a big payday or a multi-year contract. His year of invisibility with the Wolves won’t help his chance of getting a contract this summer.
If he does get signed by a team, it will likely be more for his veteran presence than for his talent. There’s a chance that the Timberwolves will re-sign Brooks since he performed up to expectations, but he will be a very low priority for the team this off-season.