Minnesota Timberwolves big man Karl-Anthony Towns has been out since November with a calf injury, but that reportedly hasn’t stopped his name from being mentioned in some rumors.
It seems like some teams are paying close attention to what’s going on in Minnesota.
“Teams are already talking about it,” Timberwolves insider Jon Krawczynski said during an appearance on Zach Lowe’s podcast. “There’s no doubt that other teams are eyeing this situation and looking to see if KAT will become available.
“I can tell you from everyone that I’ve talked to within the organization, they very much believe in KAT. They believe that once he comes back and they have some time to build around ANT (Anthony Edwards) and [Rudy] Gobert and KAT, they very much believe that can still work. Chris Finch believes it. Tim Connelly believes it. They don’t have any plans to trade him.
“But if the bottom falls out of this thing and they go forward that way, there are going to be teams knocking on the door. I do think that overall, especially locally here, there’s a lack of appreciation among fans for what Karl-Anthony Towns is as a player.”
Last season, the Timberwolves finished in seventh place in the Western Conference and then lost to the Memphis Grizzlies in a tough six-game first-round series.
They made a big move for Gobert in the offseason in an attempt to solidify themselves as contenders in the West, but things haven’t gone according to plan. At this point in the season, Minnesota is in ninth place in the West with a 31-32 record.
The team has gone through plenty of rough patches during the current campaign and cannot seem to sustain any type of momentum.
Minnesota’s struggles have led plenty of people in the NBA world to heavily criticize the offseason trade for Gobert. It looks to be a pretty awkward fit, but Krawczynski is reporting that people within the organization believe things can work with the French big man in Minnesota.
Something to keep an eye on whenever Towns makes his return is how the offense will work. In Towns’ absence, Edwards has stepped up and taken on a larger role.
Prior to Towns going down the injury, Edwards was averaging 22.6 points on 17.9 shots per contest. Since then, the one-time All-Star is averaging 25.8 points on 20.3 shots per game.
It will be interesting to see if Edwards takes a step back once Towns returns. Earlier in the season, it was reported that a rival head coach had noticed Edwards “sulking” during plays that resulted in the former Rookie of the Year getting the ball.
There is not set timetable for the two-time All-NBA selection’s return, though Finch recently said that he’s in the “final stages” of his recovery.
Chris Finch said Karl-Anthony Towns is in the "final stages" of trying to ramp up to play. Finch added he doesn't know how long that will take, however.
Finch: "He’s itching to play. … I think it’s just literally just going through the final stages of what that looks like."
— Chris Hine (@ChristopherHine) February 24, 2023
The Timberwolves are currently on a three-game losing streak and will look to snap that on Tuesday against the Los Angeles Clippers.