HomeBasketball TodayTimberwolves' Terrifying Trade Deadline Dilemma in 2024: A Nightmare Unveiled!

Timberwolves’ Terrifying Trade Deadline Dilemma in 2024: A Nightmare Unveiled!

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The Timberwolves better be ready for these scenarios…

The Minnesota Timberwolves are off to one of the best starts in franchise history. With a 35-15 record, Minnesota is 20 games above .500 for the first time in a long. With the Timberwolves roaring early this season, everyone wants to know what moves they have up their sleeves at the NBA trade deadline. However, given their limited flexibility, it may be better to focus on other Western Conference teams and how their potential moves negatively impact a potential matchup for Minnesota in the playoffs.

Here are some nightmare scenarios for the Timberwolves at the 2024 NBA trade deadline.

Many believe that Oklahoma City is ahead of schedule this season. While they are still extremely young, the Thunder’s success is a product of matching talent with a system that enhances individual performance. To Sam Presti’s credit, the roster fits together very well. Chet Holmgren’s ability to stretch the floor draws opposing centers out of the paint. With driving lanes galore, OKC’s star Shai Gilgeous-Alexander sets the tone with his dominant inside-out game.

Off of his live dribble penetration, the remaining roster is built to shoot the ball or to attack closeouts by driving the basketball. Mark Daigneault’s system perfectly utilizes the talent on-roster by also mixing in small-to-small screens, ghost screens and playing with pace–a very different style from how Minnesota approaches the game. The Timberwolves advantage, however, comes from their sheer size, ability to protect the rim with Gobert and challenge the Thunder at the point of attack with great defensive weapons like Jaden McDaniels and Nickeil Alexander-Walker.

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Minnesota’s size advantage would become less dominant, though, if the Thunder decide to buy some size at the deadline. With OKC’s treasure trove of tradeable draft choices, they could outbid everyone for any players they decide to add. One standout player could be Kelly Olynyk of the Utah Jazz. The versatile frontcourt player would be a fantastic fit into the Oklahoma City Thunder’s style of play.

Capable of handling the basketball, passing off of a live handle and knocking down perimeter shots, Olynyk landing in OKC would be a nightmare for Minnesota. Olynyk would give the Thunder a frontcourt option to attack Karl-Anthony Towns off the dribble. Daigneault could look to use Olynyk in lineups with Holmgren as well as the sole big on the floor when Holmgren is on the bench.

In Minnesota’s most recent matchup with the Orlando Magic, the Timberwolves struggled to score, especially due to Jonathan Isaac’s ability to defend Karl-Anthony Towns. While analyzing the Los Angeles Clippers roster, one thing they lack is a true defensive-minded forward who can be their lockdown defender around their stars. Despite already making a big trade for James Harden, the Clippers may be positioned for another deal.

The Clippers have the ability to offer second-round picks, PJ Tucker’s contract, young players and pick swaps. Behind this, the Clippers could be in the market for another big man or a defensive-minded power forward. While Jonathan Isaac’s availability isn’t a certainty, the Clippers could pursue other options.

The Brooklyn Nets appear to be possible sellers at the trade deadline. Dorian Finney-Smith could be a great get for the Clippers in hopes of slowing Towns and Anthony Edwards. The versatile forward has playoff experience of defending top-end talent, especially in the year the Dallas Mavericks made a push to the Western Conference Finals. The Clippers have also been linked to PJ Washington in recent trade rumors. With the Clippers’ star power, small additions could become very problematic in Minnesota’s potential future battles with Los Angeles.

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One final nightmare scenario for the Timberwolves this trade deadline would be an aggressive Sacramento Kings franchise. The Kings already pose problems for Minnesota’s roster construction. Sacramento plays with a ton of pace, drives the ball well and kicks to shooters around Domantas Sabonis. In their first meeting this season, Harrison Barnes had his way with Karl-Anthony Towns to start the game.

Towns has struggled navigating screens at the point of attack. With Sacramento’s zoom actions, Towns found himself working through screens more than ever. While the Timberwolves were reluctant to switch, the Kings found open shot after open shot. The real fear for the Timberwolves would sink in if Sacramento turns Harrison Barnes into a more capable forward. Kyle Kuzma as a potential option could really hurt the Timberwolves in a potential playoff matchup with the Kings.

Kuzma’s downhill handle and scoring prowess place him a tier above modern-day Harrison Barnes. While Minnesota’s size presents some distinct advantages, there are also inherent downsides. If the Kings are able to land a highly-talented offensive four, Towns would be asked to defend in space and navigate screens even more frequently. While the Timberwolves are looking for small improvements themselves, other moves by Western Conference powers this NBA trade deadline may be just as detrimental to Minnesota’s playoff chances.

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