Big shoes to fill
If you think about it, the Minnesota Timberwolves have two incredible young players who are vital to the future of this team. But everyone knows how valuable Anthony Edwards is to the future of the Minnesota Timberwolves, and perhaps to the NBA overall. The other guy, who is still waiting for his contract extension, and still growing in importance for the Timberwolves roster, is also still growing in height.
Small forward Jaden McDaniels is a player who colors his game outside of the lines. What that means is that he is not just a typical 3-and-D type of NBA wingman. He is a small forward, yes. But he has the ability to become closer to opposing top NBA scorers than their own shadows. And while the NBA powers-that-be turn their heads and look the other way, more and more star players have been entirely neutralized by JMac:
Yet he has not gotten the pageantry or fanfare that he has earned and deserves. Yet.
With so much attention being showered on other Timberwolves players who are competing for the 2023 FIBA World Cup, that may not change very quickly through the 2023-24 NBA season either.
But that’s just fine with Jaden McDaniels. His defense will only sharpen that much more. And his ability to score, already surpassing more than 12 points per game, could skyrocket to 15+ points per game this season. Meanwhile, his perimeter shot is already at an incredible 39.8 percent accuracy. He could topple the 40 percent mark this year as well.
McDaniels doesn’t care one way or the other if he gets his well-earned recognition. He knows what most Minnesota Timberwolves fans already know. He will eventually get noticed. And when he does, the more surprised NBA pundits, analysts, and experts will be over how well he has developed in the NBA.