3 Timberwolves who hurt their contract value in 2023-24

Washington Wizards v Minnesota Timberwolves
Washington Wizards v Minnesota Timberwolves / Stephen Maturen/GettyImages
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1. Kyle Anderson

One of the most heavily criticized players on the Wolves roster this past season, Kyle Anderson failed to make the same impression as he did in his first season in the Twin Cities. Anderson's stats decreased across all five major categories.

What ultimately led to Anderson's impressive performance a season ago was his inclusion in the starting lineup. Last season, Towns missed a bevy of games due to injury. In turn, Anderson started 46 of 69 appearances.

Despite not starting for nearly as many games, the 6-foot-9 forward's playing time only decreased by about six minutes per game. Of course, a decrease in statistics is concurrent with dwindling playing time. However, Anderson's per-36-minute statistics all saw a decline besides his assist numbers.

The 30-year-old forward's shooting also took a turn for the worse. After nailing a career-high 41.0 percent of his triples a season ago—his 3-point percentage nosedived to 22.9 percent. Anderson nearly made as many triples in 2022-23 as he attempted in 2023-24.

While playing next to a 3-point shooting big man in Naz Reid is essential, he's almost unplayable next to Gobert. Substitute Anderson in the lineup for Towns and the Wolves were nearly 10 points per game worse. The offense was abysmal with two non-shooting threats on the floor. Minnesota's starting five substituting Anderson for Towns ranked in the eighth percentile in points per 100 possessions.

Anderson fit in nicely alongside Reid, but only if Gobert roamed the paint. With Anderson at the four and Reid at the five, Minnesota was 37.7 points per game worse. Fortunately for the Wolves, this frontcourt was seldom used.

Anderson is a fine player, but his fit is far from seamless. As a non-shooting big, he must share the floor with a rim protector and quality outside shooters. Spending upwards of even $9 million on Anderson is far-fetched at this point—it's likely the veteran forward commands around $4-5 million per season. If he were to redeem his 3-point shooting value from a season ago, this conversation would be entirely different.