2. Supporting Cast
Towns has been awesome for much of the season, but the supporting cast has not been.
Unfortunately starts with Andrew Wiggins, and it sure doesn’t seem as if there’s much to be hopeful for there. Wiggins is in his fifth season and is having his worst campaign yet, all while making $25.47 million in the first year of a max contract.
Outside of Wiggins, however, there is some hope.
Jeff Teague, who has a player option for $19 million for the 2019-20 season, will likely be back. While overpaid, he’s still a league-average point guard when healthy and stabilizes the position.
Dario Saric is still on his rookie contract and will only be 25 years old at the start of next season. Despite his modest production this season, he averaged 14.6 points and 6.7 rebounds last year as a 23-year-old starter on 52-win team that got to the second round of the playoffs.
Saric still has the upside of a star, and is the perfect match alongside Towns. The two simply need to play together more often, and the coaching staff will need to put together more creative sets to run the offense through the duo. The 4-5 pick-and-roll between Saric and Towns could be unstoppable, as both bigs can handle the ball, pass, shoot threes, and score in the post.
Minnesota has the ability to extend Saric as well, and it would be a no-brainer to lock him up as soon as either Wiggins or Gorgui Dieng is traded.
Robert Covington is one of the top “three-and-D” player sin the league, and still has a couple of years on his contract. He’ll immediately be the second-best all-around player on the Wolves when healthy, and is a huge part of the team moving forward.
Josh Okogie is just a rookie and is already a solid rotation piece. He’s been exposed as over-matched on offense frequently in the absence of Covington but has more than held his own on defense, locking down everyone from James Harden to Russell Westbrook. Okogie’s ceiling is still fairly unclear, as he needs an opportunity to improve his ball-handling and outside shooting, but his floor is already as an effective energy guy and defender off the bench.
Much of the rest of the roster (Gibson, Jones, Anthony Tolliver, Derrick Rose, Luol Deng) will be free agents this summer, and as valuable as both Gibson and Rose have been, the Wolves’ success won’t hinge on production from those roles next season.