The Minnesota Timberwolves fired head coach Ryan Saunders on Sunday night following the team’s 103-99 loss to the New York Knicks, the team announced.
The loss was the T-Wolves’ fourth in a row, dropping them to an NBA-worst 7-24 on the season.
“We would like to thank Ryan for his time and commitment to the Timberwolves organization and wish him the best in the future,” Timberwolves president of basketball operations Gersson Rosas said in a statement.
“These are difficult decisions to make, however this change is in the best interest of the organization’s short and long-term goals.”
The Timberwolves said they will make an announcement regarding their next head coach on Monday. Minnesota is expected to name Raptors assistant Chris Finch their next head coach, according to multiple reports.
Saunders, 34, took over the Timberwolves midway through the 2018-19 season following the firing of head coach Tom Thibodeau. He went 17-25 down the stretch, but the abbreviated 2019-20 season saw the T-Wolves go just 19-45.
The team won the 2020 draft lottery and selected Anthony Edwards first overall, but this year’s campaign has been derailed in part due to injuries and COVID-19-related absences to stars Karl-Anthony Towns – the No. 1 overall pick in the 2015 NBA draft –and D’Angelo Russell – the No. 2 overall pick in 2015 whom the team traded for last season.
Saunders, the son of late longtime Timberwolves coach Flip Saunders, finishes his time in Minnesota with a 43-94 record.