Jarred Vanderbilt: Minnesota Timberwolves is Anthony Edwards’ team

Mandatory Credit: Erik Williams-USA TODAY Sports
Mandatory Credit: Erik Williams-USA TODAY Sports /

The Minnesota Timberwolves changed their strategy amidst the 2022-23 NBA season. With All-Star center and now power forward Karl-Anthony Towns off the basketball court for 53 of 82 games last season, the Timberwolves were forced to elevate young All-Star Anthony Edwards to the most prominent role on the basketball court.

In doing so, the Timberwolves pivoted from a team that featured Karl-Anthony Towns in its primary planning to a team that now focuses on featuring Anthony Edwards as the primary lynchpin to the Timberwolves roster. And that seems to make sense to many Minnesota Timberwolves fans.

Does that category include former Timberwolves teammate, PF Jarred Vanderbilt? It certainly seems to apply, doesn’t it?

Vandy’s views about Ant-Man

After securing an extension from the Los Angeles Laker, Vandy still had the time to heap praises on his former teammate, Anthony Edwards:

Jarred Vanderbilt’s comments are not the first to bring up Anthony Edwards as poised for a breakout season in 2023-24. But he is not the first former Minnesota Timberwolves player to do so this week.  Former Timberwolves legend Kevin Garnett is on the Anthony Edwards bandwagon too, and he is eager to see what Edwards will do in the upcoming NBA season.

Curiously, Garnett believes that the Timberwolves should continue to pair Anthony Edwards with Karl-Anthony Towns. Keep in mind that Garnett played many seasons for the Timberwolves, and had a long streak of consecutive appearances in the NBA Playoffs. But the Minnesota Timberwolves were unable to add other stars around Garnett to get a very good Timberwolves team over the hump from NBA Playoffs competitor to NBA Championship team.

Vanderbilt believes Edwards will be ‘One of those guys’

Vanderbilt believes that the Minnesota Timberwolves’ young All-Star shooting guard Anthony Edwards was a bit limited in the past because Edwards was not the clear leader of this team.

"“He just works. [Anthony Edwards] he’s just a dawg. You know what I’m saying? Like, on both ends (of the basketball court) He’s just a competitor. He gets it now, and you know the next step for him is just being a leader and just taking that next step, this is my team. And that was the problem that year (2021-22 NBA season), it was still like, up in the air. He wasn’t, like, ‘this is my team.’.. Now, you could tell now that he’s like ‘this my team’.He always been a dawg on both ends. He’s competitive. He damned near got everything. He can shoot. He’s athletic as hell. He defends. And he can guard.That’s the thing, when he’s locked in? He can sit down. He’s strong,. He can move his feet. And he really locks up.  So it’s like the next step for him is to stay at attention and just staying locked in.But when he decides to lock in and guard, he can guard. The sky is the limit for him, I ain’t going to lie. He got everything lined up to be one of those guys.” —Jarred Vanderbilt as per the interview above"

That’s pretty impressive praise from a former teammate.

And yet, nothing Jarred Vanderbilt was particularly embellished or over the top. He simply put into words what every NBA player is thinking right now.

Anthony Edwards is a force to be reckoned with this season. And, that being said, if the Minnesota Timberwolves front office did their job, they have assembled complimentary players around him on the Timberwolves roster to advance further than Round 1 of the 2024 NBA Playoffs.

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