Karl-Anthony Towns came into this past season as the number one overall pick, and being the number one pick, there is always a stigma of ‘bust’ potential. Lets just say, Karl-Anthony Towns was far from a bust this past season.
Actually, he was one of the better big men in the league last season. That’s where the question I am raising comes into play.
Can Karl-Anthony Towns become an All-Star this season?
The progression charts would say so as he is coming into the season after a Rookie of the Year title, and statistics that a rookie hasn’t produced since Tim Duncan. He averaged 18.3 ppg and 10.5 rpg while shooting 54% from the floor. Quickly, he was even able to stretch his range out to the three point line, and produced a decent percentage at 34%.
Towns was decent on the defensive end. He averaged 2.6 blocks per 100 possessions, and was able to help on the weak side in that sense. No matter what, he still has a long was to go on the defensive end. Towns averaged 3.4 foul in 36 minutes, so you could say that he was prone to getting in foul trouble. For right now, lets just assume that this is just lack of NBA experience, because there are still plenty of players in this league who suffer from this.
A player who Towns can learn from this upcoming season for this defensive help is current teammate Kevin Garnett. Garnett was so good at helping the weak side, and still recovering well.
Take this video as an example, KG was able to help the interior defense, and still able to recover and force a jump ball against Pau Gasol. Towns will be able to learn this and execute it once his speed improves.
What it will take for Towns to wear an All-Star jersey this season is that he has to focus on improving the defensive side of the ball, and improve his outside shooting. His defense is not lacking, but if it improves, it can put him into a whole other category of big men. His offensive game on the inside will always be improving, but if he has an outside shot, it makes him that much more dangerous to guard.
The outside shooting from a big man in the game today is so much more important. The Timberwolves have that young core of talent that reminds a lot of people of the Warriors from 5 years ago. A young Klay Thompson and young Steph Curry were the centerpiece. Towns and Wiggins are the Timberwolves’ centerpieces.
I am not saying they are going to be the Warriors, because they have reached a level of greatness that is almost too hard to top. But if Towns keeps up the improvement, it wouldn’t be outrageous to see him become an All-Star and take this team to new heights sooner than expected.