The best players the Minnesota Timberwolves passed on in the NBA Draft

Minnesota Timberwolves, NBA Draft (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images)
Minnesota Timberwolves, NBA Draft (Photo by Kevin C. Cox/Getty Images) /
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Minnesota Timberwolves,
Minnesota Timberwolves, /

Players Minnesota Timberwolves passed on in NBA Draft: John Collins

Scouting Report. Center. Creighton. 15. Pick Analysis. Justin Patton. player. 86

John Collins. Scouting Report. Pick Analysis. Power Forward. 125. Wake Forest. 19. player

John Collins, Big, 2017 NBA Draft

John Collins has blossomed into a star for the Atlanta Hawks.

His game has evolved and made him an inside-out threat offensively, averaging 20.1 points and 8.8 rebounds for the Hawks on 40.1 percent 3-point shooting. A versatile player, Collins is on his way to All-Star status given the steadiness of his improvement over the last three seasons and is likely to be the subject of a bidding war for a max contract once his rookie contract expires.

Had the Wolves drafted Collins, his growth would have likely been accelerated. Collins would have played under Taj Gibson for a year and likely learned more from him than he could have learned from anyone on the abysmal 2017-18 Hawks roster.

Fast forward to today, Collins would be a perfect fit for today’s Wolves team. His shooting and size would fit on Ryan Saunders’ Wolves team that desperately needs a starting power forward, shooting, and defensive help.

Instead, the Wolves opted to select Justin Patton to support Karl-Anthony Towns in the Wolves frontcourt. Even without hindsight, this pick scratched heads for a number of reasons.

First, Karl-Anthony Towns, a center, had already established himself as the face of the Wolves franchise. Second, the Wolves also had Gorgui Dieng, who started all 82 games for the Wolves in the year prior to the 2017 draft.

Position aside, Justin Patton simply has not panned out in the NBA. Hampered by injuries, Patton has appeared in just nine games throughout his first three seasons and is currently with the Oklahoma City Thunder.

Though John Collins is no Steph Curry, it certainly hurts Wolves fans to know that their team selected Justin Patton while there was another big with an All-Star ceiling still on the board.