Karl-Anthony Towns says the Timberwolves proved they’re not the ‘laughingstock team’ people have called them for years

Brad Sullivan
3 Min Read
Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports

While Karl-Anthony Towns is disappointed about the end of the Minnesota Timberwolves’ season, the big man expressed a belief that the team has changed its previous image across the NBA.

Towns spoke after the Timberwolves were eliminated by the Memphis Grizzlies in Game 6 of their Western Conference playoff series.

“I think the league understands who we are,” Towns said after Game 6. “They know what we are, not that laughingstock team like everyone has tried to paint us and make us out for all these years. We came out, balled out, gave ourselves a chance. I think that this is the beginning of something special and it’s also one of the first times in this franchise where a lot of pieces are falling into place. It doesn’t feel so scrambled. It doesn’t feel so random.”

In all but one of their postseason appearances, the Timberwolves have been eliminated in the first round. While that same result took place this season, the talent on the team’s roster suggests that it might make deeper playoff runs in the years ahead.

The 26-year-old Towns was a major part of the Timberwolves’ success this season. He finished the 2021-22 regular season with averages of 24.6 points, 9.8 rebounds and 3.6 assists per game.

Towns narrowly missed out on averaging a double-double in the regular season, which marked the first time that he didn’t accomplish that feat in his seven NBA seasons. Yet, that blip on his statistical radar is a minor detail that gives an indication of just how consistent he’s been over the course of his career.

Lofty numbers like the ones he’s put up in the NBA were expected of him when the Timberwolves took him with the top overall pick in the 2015 NBA Draft.

Despite Minnesota’s problems on the court since he entered the league, Towns has further developed his game. He adds a lot of value by being a big man who can connect from beyond the arc. In the 2021-22 regular season, he made 41.0 percent of his 3-pointers.

The Timberwolves will undoubtedly use their current disappointment as motivation to improve next season. Towns figures to be a central part of any improvement.

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Brad has written on a variety of both NBA and NFL topics and has worked previously as a sports information director at the collegiate level. A lifetime fan of sports, he's witnessed countless great moments in different sports and understands that stories can be compelling from both the perspective of winners and losers. As a frustrated fan of Cleveland sports, he experienced something unprecedented when the Cavaliers won the city's first championship in 52 years.