Mike Conley Jr. contract details, grade: Did Timberwolves get a steal?

The Minnesota Timberwolves are keeping Mike Conley around at a bargain price.

Mike Conley Jr., Minnesota Timberwolves
Mike Conley Jr., Minnesota Timberwolves / David Berding/GettyImages

The Minnesota Timberwolves officially signed Mike Conley Jr. to a two-year, $21 million contract extension on Monday, per ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski. The deal cements Conley in Minnesota's lineup through the 2025-26 season.

It has been a stellar season for the 36-year-old Conley, who operates as key connective tissue for the No. 1 seed Wolves. Conley is experiencing his best shooting season to date (.444/.442/.923), averaging 10.6 points, 2.9 rebounds, and 6.4 assists (1.1 turnovers). His efficiency from 3-point range, in addition to his knack for ball security, are critical to Minnesota's success.

Simply put, the Wolves don't take this collective leap without the Conley trade a season ago. D'Angelo Russell posts gaudier stat lines, but Conley is a classic point guard. His ability to direct traffic and selflessly elevate teammates has really come into full effect this season. He established pick-and-roll chemistry with Rudy Gobert back in their shared Utah days. Meanwhile, Conley has the versatility to operate off-ball when Anthony Edwards decides to take over. He is a beneficial force all around.

Mike Conley contract details, grade: Wolves keep veteran PG at bargain price

On the surface, there's nothing to complain about here. It's a bargain contract for the Wolves. Conley's value to date has far exceeded the roughly $11 million he is due next season. The defense isn't what it was during his prime Grit n' Grind days in Memphis, but Conley can still adequately defend his position — in addition to all the good he does on offense. While the stats aren't prolific at first glance, Conley elevates teammates. He limits mistakes, generates quality shot attempts, and understands how to operate within Chris Finch's scheme.

If Conley is going to hit 40 percent of his threes and never turn the ball over for the rest of his career, Minneosta will walk away from this contract absolutely giddy. The primary concern, of course, is age. Conley will be 38 in the second year of this extension. One can't help but think of P.J. Tucker, who is toiling away on the Los Angeles Clippers' bench in the second year of a three-year contract.

At the end of the day, Conley is a 6-foot guard. He's liable to fall off quickly. The Tucker example is extreme — Conley's diversity of skill on offense raises his floor much higher — but his defense projecting toward the postseason is a concern. Teams are going to test Conley, this season and beyond. If the Wolves want to go deep, Conley will need to prove that he can hold up over the course of a rigorous playoff run.

The new CBA also merits attention here. The Wolves' roster is quickly getting expensive, which will limit Tim Connelly's ability to maneuver around the margins in the years to come.

Good teams spend money. It's that simple. But, the new CBA will place more restrictions than ever on the truly pricey rosters. Minnesota needs to be mindful of filling out the bench and maintaining the flexibility to execute midseason trades.

Assuming Conley can sustain something close to his current output, this contract is a major steal. How it looks in 2025-26, however, could be vastly different than how it looks now. That said, next season is the real point of stress. Once it becomes an expiring contract in the summer of 2025, the Wolves won't have much trouble moving on if need be.

This is the kind of smart, if mildly risky move made by winners. The Wolves are sitting pretty.

Grade: B+

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