The Minnesota Timberwolves entered the 1998 NBA offseason full of promise. With budding superstar Kevin Garnett and supporting star Stephon Marbury leading the way, the Wolves were coming off their first winning season in franchise history.
Looking to build on their momentum, Minnesota signed former No. 1 overall pick Joe Smith ahead of the lockout-shortened 1999 season. It seemed as though Smith had sold himself short by agreeing to a small, one-year contract with the upstart Wolves.
However, the truth was much shadier, and that seemingly team-friendly pact with Smith would end up costing Minnesota dearly.