Last Season: 31-51
A draft day trade reunited two familiar friends. Jimmy Butler joins his former coach Tom Thibodeau in a neighboring state of Minnesota. The Timberwolves didn’t stop at just Butler. Taj Gibson who became a free agent after a short stint in Oklahoma City decided to join in on the fun. The free agency success for the T-Wolves helped bring in a much better roster than what Thibbs has been working with the past couple of years.
Gone is their long-time point-guard Ricky Rubio who had rumored to be on the market at the trade deadline in February. Rubio was traded for only a protected future round draft pick. Almost seems like a desperation to get rid of Rubio. Perhaps, it was all a part of the plan as Rubio turns into Jeff Teague and Aaron Brooks. A key loss would be Zach LaVine who is coming off knee surgery however, it’s even better his replacement turns into Butler.
The growth of Karl Anthony-Towns and Andrew Wiggins also depends on how successful Minnesota will be this season. It also seems as the size and length of these two and Butler will make it tough for teams to score at will. Defensively, this team is expected to be one of the best with Thibodeau at the reigns. Minnesota should easily be the easiest team to have the biggest turnaround from last season. Certainly, higher expectations and a tougher Western Conference should be taken into consideration. However, improving from 31-wins last season with a revamped roster is expected. Competing against the top-tier of Thunder, Warriors, Rockets, and Spurs may not include the young T-Wolves this year. They’ll stay middle of the pack out West with the Clippers, Grizzlies, and Blazers.
Key additions: Jimmy Butler, Taj Gibson, Jamal Crawford, Jeff Teague, Aaron Brooks
Key Losses: Ricky Rubio, Kris Dunn, Zach LaVine, Nikola Pekovic
2017-2018 Prediction: 48-34