Sprewell still hoping for three-year deal

MINNEAPOLIS -- Latrell Sprewell is staying with Minnesota,
as expected, and the veteran swingman would like to finish his
career with the Timberwolves.

Sprewell has exercised his option to make $14.625 million this
season. He had until midnight Wednesday to take that salary for
2004-05 or opt out and become a free agent. Sprewell's agent,
Robert Gist, and Timberwolves vice president Kevin McHale wanted to
wait until Thursday to announce the decision.

Now, Gist and McHale will speak this summer about a three-year
contract extension for Sprewell. That would keep him in Minnesota
through 2008, when he will be 37.

"Kevin wants to extend, and Latrell wants to accept," Gist
said Thursday. "It's been a good team and a good place to play.
And there's certainly less distractions there."

Sprewell averaged 16.8 points and 3.5 assists per game last
season, his first with the Wolves, and combined with league MVP
Kevin Garnett and Sam Cassell to form the highest-scoring trio in
the NBA. Top-seeded Minnesota advanced to the Western Conference,
finals losing in six games to the Los Angeles Lakers.

"Spree believes that his chance to win the championship is
as great with the Timberwolves as any other team," Gist told Bloomberg News.

Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.