Minnesota Timberwolves: Checking in on the mock drafts

KANSAS CITY, MISSOURI - MARCH 29: Keldon Johnson #3 of the Kentucky Wildcats. (Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images)
KANSAS CITY, MISSOURI - MARCH 29: Keldon Johnson #3 of the Kentucky Wildcats. (Photo by Jamie Squire/Getty Images) /

As the calendar turns to June, it’s time to check in on a few of the mock drafts out there to see what they’re saying about the Minnesota Timberwolves at No. 11.

The Minnesota Timberwolves hold the No. 11 pick in this year’s draft, which takes place on June 20.

With the NBA Draft Combine in the rearview mirror and the NBA Finals underway, the bevy of mock drafts around the internet are being updated with the latest intel. Of course, there are debates about positional value, drafting for need or best available, and there’s always the chance that the Wolves’ revamped front office tries to trade the pick.

At any rate, let’s take a spin through some of the names that are often linked to the Wolves.

Brandon Clarke, F, Gonzaga

Jonathon Givony – ESPN (Insider)
Kyle Boone – CBS Sports
The Ringer

Perhaps the most-mocked name to the Wolves at No. 11 if Gonzaga forward Brandon Clarke.

The pros are awesome, from his elite-level athleticism to the incredible shot-blocking numbers he put up in college and his field goal percentage aroudn the rime. He profiles as an outstanding defender who should be able to check most 2s, 3s, and 4s in the NBA.

But the cons are a bit concerning. He’s already almost 23 years old and was a relatively late bloomer. He doesn’t have a jumper and will be unable to stretch the floor. And, perhaps most importantly, Clarke didn’t measure well at the combine when it came to height and wingspan.

Clarke will almost surely be on the board at No. 11 and his college production and athleticism fit the Wolves’ needs perfectly. But will they be willing to overlook the issues?

Cam Reddish, F, Duke

Gary Parrish – CBS Sports

Cam Reddish is the classic case of a major college recruit remaining raw throughout his freshman year and never finding the consistency that NBA franchises are looking for out of their top lottery picks.

Alas, Reddish will likely slide out of the top five or six picks. It may be unlikely that he falls to No. 11, but given his struggles as a freshman at Duke, it would be a mild surprise to see Minnesota take him even if he remains on the board that long.

Reddish shot just 35.6 percent from the field in a stacked Duke lineup and made only 33.3 percent of his 3-point attempts. There’s little to suggest that he’s ready to step in and contribute immediately at the NBA level.

Keldon Johnson, G/F, Kentucky

Kristopher Knox, Bleacher Report

Mocking Keldon Johnson to the Wolves at No. 11 is bold, as the majority of mock drafts have him going somewhere in the No. 19 to No. 22 range.

In terms of what Johnson brings to the table, however, Minnesota could be a perfect fit. He shot 38.1 percent from 3-point rage for the Wildcats and is a high-effort, high-energy defender.

In fact, Wolves fans: consider Johnson a less athletic, better-shooting version of Okogie. Sure, the Wolves already have Okogie, but they could use more shooting and more defense. Neither player has impressive handles or high-level offensive I.Q., but they both can be explosive when they choose to be decisive with the ball, and having a pair of hard-nosed perimeter defenders would be awesome.

It would be surprising to see Johnson go this early, but perhaps the Wolves would explore a trade-back scenario in which they pick up an additional asset and still land another wing to their depth chart.