The NBA Draft is coming up, which means The Game Haus will be doing draft profiles for each NBA team. Each day, a new team will be analyzed for their past season, their team needs and targets. Today, the Minnesota Timberwolves will be evaluated.
The Timberwolves finished the season with a record of 36-46, which placed them 11th in the Western Conference this year. After making the playoffs in 2017-2018, the Timberwolves had an underwhelming season.
The Timberwolves started the season on the wrong foot. Their guard Jimmy Butler was disgruntled and requested a trade after one season with the team. He played 10 games with the Timberwolves before being traded to the Philadelphia 76ers. The Timberwolves received Jerryd Bayless, Robert Covington, Dario Saric and a 2022 second-round draft pick in exchange for Butler. They also made changes to their coaching staff.
On January 6, they fired their head coach Tom Thibodeau. Ryan Saunders was named interim head coach and coached the team for the rest of the season. He also signed a multi-year deal with the Timberwolves earlier this month. So, the Wolves have a coach, a new team president (Gersson Rosas) and a core of Karl Anthony-Towns and Andrew Wiggins. But as a lottery team, they can use more.
The Timberwolves have two picks in the 2019 NBA Draft.
First Round: Pick No. 11
Second Round: Pick No. 43
Point guard- The Timberwolves had four point guards last season, but they are all free agents. Their point guards included Derrick Rose, Jeff Teague, Jerryd Bayless and Tyus Jones. They can either retain one of these guards or find a new playmaker through the draft.
Shooting- They were not the worst three-point in the NBA but were towards the bottom half of the rankings. They ranked 20th in the league and shot 35 percent from the deep this year. The Timberwolves could benefit from a consistent 3-point shooter (and if possible a 3-and-D player).
Perimeter Defense- They were 29th in the league in 3-point percentage allowed. Their defensive 3-point percentage was 37.8 percent. The Timberwolves could use help when defending the 3-point line.
First Round: Pick No. 11: Rui Hachimura F, Gonzaga
Hachimura is a 6-foot-8 forward from Gonzaga. He played three years at Gonzaga and improved each year. In his freshman year, he averaged 2.6 points in 28 games. Then, he improved to 11.6 points in his sophomore year. In his third year, Hachimura averaged 19.7 points and 6.5 rebounds. He also shot 41.7 percent from three-point range.
He is also an effective midrange shooter and can play in the post. Hachimura is athletic and can run the floor in transition. If the Timberwolves select him, he should fit in well with their young core.
Second round: Pick No. 43: Ky Bowman, G, Boston College
Bowman is a 6-foot-1 point guard from Boston College. He averaged 19.0 points, 7.5 rebounds and 4.0 assists in his junior year. Bowman can score off the dribble and can score in many different ways. He can drive to the basket and can knock down step-back jumpers. He is also a decent playmaker and a great rebounder for his size. If the Timberwolves select him, they have a point guard to utilize in the event they do not sign others.