What has been going on with the Minnesota Timberwolves All-Star shooting guard lately? Well, believe it or not, the mantle of leader of the Timberwolves pack has been quietly passed from Karl-Anthony Towns to Anthony Edwards. Surprisingly, the 21-year-old NBA star is already acting like the team’s leader.
What does that mean? Well, to be fair, it can mean a great number of things, and different things to different people. But to me, the leader of the Minnesota Timberwolves needs to be the glue guy, the one who goes above and beyond the NBA season to work out with teammates and figure out ways to make the team that much more competitive.
What does that mean? Well, pretty much what Anthony Edwards plans to do this offseason.
Anthony Edwards appears to be taking the 2023-24 NBA season quite seriously, eh?
Lead, follow, or get out of the way
We know that due to a number of extenuating circumstances, the Minnesota Timberwolves starting lineup never really gelled throughout the 2022-23 NBA season. It began when two key players, center Rudy Gobert (knee) and power forward Karl-Anthony Towns (illness) were unable to train or compete together until the last preseason game of the season.
But that was just the tip of the iceberg, as the team had to compete without Towns in 53 regular season games. That was further complicated when the team had to change point guards at the NBA Trade Deadline, dealing away D’Angelo Russell for the better-suited veteran PG Mike Conley Jr.
Three items jump out at me about this, all unrelated, but when lined up together make a larger story unfold. The first is recalling the fact that the Minnesota Timberwolves President of Basketball Operations, Tim Connelly, stated that the key to the Timberwolves’ future is “Developing the best 21-year-old in the world.”
The second may be a bit harsh, but after missing so much of the season, and regressing significantly against the Denver Nuggets, where is the extra effort from Karl-Anthony Towns?
Lastly, the Minnesota Timberwolves really could not be luckier with handing over the keys to the team to Anthony Edwards. He seems to have that instinctive passion for his team, for the fans, and for the sport he loves, very much like NBA legends past and present have. That bodes very well for a Timberwolves team that is planning to feature Edwards as their main focus for years to come.
Will those plans pay off? They already are.