This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2012, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.
Former Utah Jazz forward Andrei Kirilenko is close to returning to the NBA. According to Yahoo! Sports, the Minnesota Timberwolves are finalizing a two-year, $20 million offer to Kirilenko, who has not played in the NBA since leaving Utah after the 2010-11 season.The Jazz drafted Kirilenko with the 24th overall pick of the 1999 draft. He was 18 years old at the time and spent two more seasons in Europe before coming to Utah in 2001.Kirilenko eventually played 10 seasons with the Jazz, including 2003-04, when he averaged a career-high 16.5 points, 8.1 rebounds and 3.1 assists.After missing only five games during his first three seasons, however, Kirilenko missed 133 over his final seven years with the Jazz because of an assortment of injuries.Kirilenko left Utah in 2011, when he became a free agent. He signed with CSKA Moscow and became Europe's Most Valuable Player last season.Kirilenko ranks among the Jazz's all-time leaders in a handful of statistical categories. He is second in blocked shots (1,380), fifth in minutes (20,989), fifth in assists (1,919), sixth in scoring (8,411) and seventh in rebounding (3,836). Steve Luhm