Minnesota Timberwolves Roundup: Derrick Williams, plus Towns rumors

SAN FRANCISCO, CA - DECEMBER 23: Karl-Anthony Towns #32 of the Minnesota Timberwolves looks on. Copyright 2019 NBAE (Photo by Noah Graham/NBAE via Getty Images)
SAN FRANCISCO, CA - DECEMBER 23: Karl-Anthony Towns #32 of the Minnesota Timberwolves looks on. Copyright 2019 NBAE (Photo by Noah Graham/NBAE via Getty Images) /

In a week that saw the Minnesota Timberwolves get back to playing decent basketball, there was also plenty of off-the-court news to digest.

The Minnesota Timberwolves recently endured an 11-game losing streak. During that nearly month-long stretch, the sky absolutely fell like it was falling around Ryan Saunders and his team.

The “Karl-Anthony Towns is disgruntled” stories began in earnest, starting with a New York Post article on Christmas Day that states that the Knicks were “monitoring” Towns’ situation. Then, Ethan Strauss at The Athletic reported that the Golden State Warriors were keeping tabs on Towns and his potential availability.

Since that time, the Wolves have stabilized themselves by winning three of their last five games. As these things usually seem to go, the off-court news has taken an ever-so-slight turn for the better as well.

This week, both Jon Krawczynski of The Athletic and Marc Stein of the New York Times shot down the idea that the Wolves would even entertain the idea of trading Towns. It was underscored by Kurt Helin of NBC Sports as he summarized the comments from Krawczynski and Stein.

As we’ve reiterated here at Dunking With Wolves and yours truly has ranted about more than once on the Locked On Wolves podcast, there is zero reason for the Wolves to trade Towns. He has four years remaining on his contract and is one of the best 15 players in the league.

What would possess them to trade him?

It was encouraging to see at least a couple members of the national media in Stein and Helin understand just how absurd the idea of moving Towns actually is. Kudos to them.

In the slightly-more-lighthearted-and-ridiculous category, there was former Wolf Derrick Williams, randomly complaining about the Wolves drafting him No. 2 overall back in 2011.


Of course, Williams was the consensus No. 2 player in the draft following Kyrie Irving, and the Wolves had won 17 games during the prior season. Of course they were going to draft for talent first and foremost.

Not only that, Nikola Pekovic was only entering his second season in the NBA after averaging just 13.6 minutes per game as a rookie. Minnesota wasn’t sure what they had in him, and Kevin Love was playing roughly have his minutes at the center spot.

There was also some question as to what Williams’ best position was. He turned out to be much more effective as a stretch-4, but at the time he was thought of as somewhat of a tweener and as much of a 3 as he was a 4.

The 2011-12 season that followed was Ricky Rubio’s rookie year and saw the Wolves start 21-19 in the lockout-shortened season before Rubio tore his ACL against the Los Angeles Lakers in early March. They finished 26-40 and the development of both Rubio individually and a Rubio-Love duo was permanently stunted.

As for Williams, he never figured it out in parts of seven NBA seasons, shooting just 30 percent from beyond the arc for his career after canning 56.8 percent of his 3-point attempts in his second and final collegiate season at the University of Arizona.

Next. 3 intriguing trade targets for the Wolves. dark

The highlight of his career was as a late-season pickup and part-time rotation player for the 2016-17 Cleveland Cavaliers team that lost to the Golden State Warriors in the Finals. Williams is now playing overseas in Turkey.