I: Jarred Vanderbilt
The fact is that the Minnesota Timberwolves loved Jarred Vanderbilt, but so did the Utah Jazz. In the end, he was traded away. Curiously, he started for the Jazz in their opening game upset of the Denver Nuggets. In the game, Vanderbilt scored seven points and hauled in 12 rebounds in the win
Vanderbilt was not an easy player for the Minnesota Timberwolves to trade away. He is a young and rising NBA star whose height of 6-foot-9 at the age of just 23 years old suggested that his best playing days were ahead of him. And they very well may be.
After playing 52 games for the Utah Jazz, he was packed up and shipped to the Los Angeles Lakers, where he remains to this day. Unfortunately, his postseason performance for the Lakers was far less impressive than expected.
While the Timberwolves may miss the ability to score points and shoot from the perimeter of Beasley and Prince, the Timberwolves will most likely miss Jarred Vanderbilt’s ability to work the boards and haul in rebounds. In fact, his 8.4 rebounds per game for the Timberwolves in 2021-22 was his career-best.
Vanderbilt is also unique in that he is a better NBA defender than a scorer, which is likely why the Lakers retained him. While the Minnesota Timberwolves have since addressed their defensive deficiencies, you can bet that Timberwolves Coach Finch would have been happy to have Vanderbilt on the Timberwolves roster for the 2023-24 NBA season.