Wolves star Towns gets back to scoring in bunches
With an established star and several young talents to build around, the Minnesota Timberwolves are attempting to establish themselves as a playoff contender once again.
From established players like Karl-Anthony Towns and Andrew Wiggins to newcomers like Josh Okogie and Jarrett Culver, we’re taking a weekly look at the present, and future, of the Wolves.
Each Thursday we’ll also track the progress of the Iowa Wolves standouts who might be of help to the Wolves in the future, or a current member of Minnesota’s roster.
This is the 11th edition of the 2019-20 Young Wolves Tracker.
Spotlight on …
Center Karl-Anthony Towns
Towns is back.
Well, he officially returned from injury Friday night in Indiana. But after Wednesday night’s performance in Chicago, we can say the two-time All-Star is really back.
Towns, who hadn’t missed a single game until his fourth season in the league, sat out 15 games from mid-December to mid-January with a knee injury.
The 24-year-old scored 27 points in his official return against the Pacers but struggled the following night against Toronto, shooting 1 of 7 from 3-point range. He finished the night with 12 points in 27 minutes as head coach Ryan Saunders eased him back on the court.
Towns went off for a season-high 40 points against his former teammate Zach LaVine and the Bulls, recording his eighth career game with 40+ points on the scoreboard.
It seems like he’s got his legs back under him now.
-- Wiggins tied a season high by draining four 3-pointers on Wednesday night in Chicago, hitting a big milestone in the process: 500 makes from downtown. Wiggins sits alone atop the Wolves’ 3-point record books with 502 career 3s. Towns isn’t too far behind in second place with 485.
-- Guard Shabazz Napier grabbed a season-high seven rebounds Wednesday night, just one shy of his career best of eight set back in 2017 with Portland.
-- Jarrett Culver, the subject of last week’s Wolves tracker because of his consistent play in January, poured in a career-high 26 points during Saturday’s loss to Toronto. But he’s fallen off since then, putting up just six points against Denver (2 of 8 shooting) and three points against Chicago (1 of 5 shooting). The growing pains continue.
-- Down at the farm, former Gophers center Jordan Murphy is averaging 9.8 points, 6.4 rebounds, 1.9 assists and 0.8 blocks per game for the G League Wolves.
-- Iowa Wolves center James Webb III made a season-high eight field goals Monday night en route to his fourth 20+ point game of the year.