Next season is important for a lot of the franchises. The research that they have done, they need to see how far along are they in terms of winning a championship. However, there is one team in particular who is a lot at stake with the changes they have brought in this season. That team is none other than the Minnesota Timberwolves.
Season leading to Gobert trade
Last season, the Timberwolves had reached the playoffs after winning in the play-in tournament. They entered as the 7th seed and faced the 2nd seeded Memphis Grizzlies. Both teams were young in terms of experience so the series was a back and forth one. In the end, the Grizzlies ended up as the victor.
But, this failure was a ray of hope for the Timberwolves in a long while. They realized that they needed to capitalize on it, hence this off-season they traded for Rudy Gobert from the Utah Jazz and nearly traded their whole future away. They went All-In on this trade with expectation to try and win the championship.
Although the Timberwolves lost some key pieces as well, they have an X-factor over other teams on whom they can count on. This player is also the one who shall be replacing Karl Anthony-Towns as the face of Minnesota. That player is none other than Anthony Edwards.
The question is why? Well, in the two years that Anthony Edwards have entered the Timberwolves, they have started to win games. In his rookie season, Edwards averaged 19.3 points, 4.7 rebounds, 2.9 assists and 1.1 steals per game.
Anthony Edwards career so far
In the next season, he was already the second leading scorer in the team and he has come up big in the final moments than Karl Anthony Towns. In the 2021-22 season, Edwards put up a resounding 21.3 points, 4.8 rebounds, 3.8 assists and 1.5 steals per game. But that’s not all. In the Play-In tournament, it was his contribution that led the Timberwolves all the way to the playoffs. He led the team in scoring with 30 points, 5 rebounds, 2 assists and 1 steal against the Los Angeles Clippers.
In the playoffs, Towns struggled immensely against the Grizzlies defense. Edwards on the other hand was going absolutely explosively without any heed to the opponents. He was the leading scorer in that series with 25.2 points, 4.2 rebounds, 3 assists, 1.2 steals and 1.2 blocks per game. Basically, he was all over the court.
So next season, it is immensely important for the Timberwolves to be making that leap into a championship contender. Of course they don’t have to win immediately, but within the next 2-3 seasons they have to get a chip at all costs. If Anthony Edwards step into that superstar dimension, than their season is a success. Otherwise failure to make the playoffs will only add to the backlash of trading for Gobert. It is do or die for the Timberwolves from here on out.