Minnesota Timberwolves Roundup: Wolves’ future rank, player shoes

DENVER, CO - MARCH 12: Karl-Anthony Towns #32 of the Minnesota Timberwolves. Copyright 2019 NBAE (Photo by Bart Young/NBAE via Getty Images)
DENVER, CO - MARCH 12: Karl-Anthony Towns #32 of the Minnesota Timberwolves. Copyright 2019 NBAE (Photo by Bart Young/NBAE via Getty Images) /

ESPN released the latest edition of their NBA Future Power Rankings this week, and the Minnesota Timberwolves continue to slide down the list. Plus, we’ll take you to a database of all shoes worn by NBA players…

It wasn’t even three years ago when ESPN ranked the Minnesota Timberwolves No. 9 on their list of Future Power Rankings.

Now, with Tom Thibodeau gone and Andrew Wiggins’ development stagnating, the Wolves have slid to No. 22 on the NBA Future Power Rankings (ESPN Insider required) released by Kevin Pelton and Bobby Marks of ESPN.

The rankings take into account the following categories: Players, Management, Money, Market, and Draft. Back in 2016, there was still hope for Wiggins, Gorgui Dieng hadn’t been signed to his massive contract, and Tom Thibodeau was seen as a top-five coach in the league.

Oh, how times have changed.

Now, even with the continued ascension of Karl-Anthony Towns, the Wolves have little cap flexibility after sinking gobs of money into Wiggins and Dieng and they’re under an interim head coach with a lame-duck general manager in Scott Layden. For these reasons, Money and Management are both ranked in the bottom six in the league in this ranking.

However, the Draft (tied for No. 14) and Players (tied for No. 16) are both middle-of-the-pack, as the Wolves have plenty of talent and don’t owe any future draft picks. Plus, rookies Josh Okogie and Keita Bates-Diop have shown plenty of promise this year.

But a big part of what tanks the Wolves’ overall ranking in the article is that Pelton and Marks rank the Twin Cities market dead-last in the league, which is sure to make Minnesotans feel all warm and fuzzy inside.

The teams the Wolves are ahead of? The Pistons, Knicks, Wizards, Suns, Pelicans, Cavaliers, Grizzlies, and Hornets, who brought up the rear at No. 30.

The personal opinion here is that the rankings undersell just how transcendent of a player it appears that Towns is morphing into, and if the Wolves are able to trade either Wiggins or Dieng (a tall task, to be sure) and free up a bit of cap space, there could be something to write home about in Minnesota.

Shifting gears … let’s talk about shoes.

Dunking With Wolves was alerted to Baller Shoes DB, which is exactly what it sounds like: a massive database that lists every shoe ever worn professionally by every NBA player. Sort by team, by shoe, or by individual player. In most cases, each shoe has the date on which it was worn listed beneath it. (Check out the Towns entry. Awesome.)

Next. On Gorgui Dieng's future with the Wolves. dark

Go ahead and sink some time into perusing the site. It’s an easy way to get lost in the world of shoes and a ton of fun.