Minnesota Timberwolves star Karl-Anthony Towns was named an All-Star reserve this week for the first time since 2019. Anthony Edwards missed the cut, however.
Plus, former Wolves associate head coach David Vanterpool is speaking out, and ESPN’s Zach Lowe wants the Wolves to use Towns more on offense.
Was Minnesota Timberwolves guard Anthony Edwards an All-Star snub?
Karl-Anthony Towns was a deserving All-Star. That’s not in question. In fact, it’s tough to pick any player on the Western Conference roster that wasn’t deserving — although we could absolutely have a conversation about Andrew Wiggins. Or, more accurately, Wiggins and Draymond Green should probably not both be on the team.
Ultimately, Green won’t play due to injury, and Commissioner Adam Silver will be naming an injury replacement soon. So the question now doesn’t necessarily have to be who shouldn’t be on the roster, but who should replace Green.
Edwards is a legitimate candidate to fill the spot.
While Los Angeles Lakers big man Anthony Davis is deserving in terms of what he’s done on the court, he’s also only appeared in 32 games this season. An argument could be made for San Antonio Spurs guard Dejounte Murray, too, as he leads the league in steals per game and is top-five in total assists while averaging nearly 20 points per game.
But Edwards may be the perfect balance of solid production and dynamic play for a lead scorer on a likely playoff team. Don’t be shocked if he’s named to fill Green’s spot.
David Vanterpool talks about the Timberwolves passing him over
In the wake of a bombshell lawsuit filed against the NFL and three franchises alleging racism in hiring practices, former Timberwolves associate head coach David Vanterpool spoke with Marc J. Spears of The Undefeated about being passed over for a promotion to lead the Wolves bench last year in the wake of the firing of former head coach Ryan Saunders.
It’s a packed article, full of additional details surrounding the way that former Wolves president of basketball operations Gersson Rosas went about informing Vanterpool of the news, in addition to Vanterpool’s immediate reaction and the way that he’s handled the ensuing months.
The article focuses on the much larger issue of racism, specifically when it comes to a lack of Black coaches in a predominantly Black league. It’s a strong read, and here’s hoping that Vanterpool gets his opportunity soon.
ESPN’s Zach Lowe wants to see Karl-Anthony Towns with the ball in his hands
After sitting second and even third at times, Towns’ usage rate finally ranks first on the Wolves’ roster, albeit only three-tenths of a point ahead of Edwards’ mark.
Zach Lowe highlighted the relative lack of Towns-led offensive possessions for the Wolves in his most recent 10 NBA Things article at ESPN (subscription required).
He uses a video clip of a possession that Wolves fans have seen many times: Edwards dribbles the ball down the court, ad despite Towns holding an advantage in the post against a much smaller player, Edwards shot a tough, contested 3-point shot.
Lowe drives home his point by underscoring that, at the very least, passing to Towns would draw a double-team, potentially leaving Edwards open for a catch-and-shoot 3-point attempt. The kicker here is that Edwards is shooting a crazy 43 percent on such tries, versus just 31 percent on pull-up threes.
It’s a fun, brief blurb in the middle of what is always an insightful article from Lowe.
Here’s hoping that Towns’ usage rate continues to grow as the Wolves begin to navigate a beatable portion of their schedule.