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ESPN’s Marks doesn’t ‘see anything’ on potential Karl-Anthony Towns trade

Karl-Anthony Towns #32 of the Minnesota Timberwolves looks on during the home opener against the Miami Heat at Target Center on October 27, 2019 in Minneapolis, Minnesota. The Timberwolves defeated the Heat 116-109. (Photo by Hannah Foslien/Getty Images)

All it took was one tiny rumbling on Minnesota Timberwolves big man Karl-Anthony Towns for his name to start carrying some weight on random trade suggestions.

The Athletic’s Ethan Strauss reported in late December that the Golden State Warriors have been “monitoring Towns’ situation,” citing that multiple team executives believe that Towns “is unhappy in Minnesota.”

That opened a can of worms on trade speculation regarding Towns even though there is no first-hand report that 1) Towns is unhappy, 2) wants out and 3) Minnesota would even trade him if that was the case.

As ESPN’s Bobby Marks said on 98.7 FM Arizona’s Sports Station’s Bickley & Marotta Thursday, there’s even more logic behind that.

“I don’t see anything,” he said. “I don’t really see anything in what’s going on in Minnesota. First, Towns is on the first year of a five-year contract. If this was year three, similar to maybe with what happened in New Orleans with Anthony Davis then I could certainly understand that.

“It’s year one of Towns’ (contract) and it’s year one of (head coach) Ryan Saunders and Gersson Rosas as the head of basketball operations so I don’t see any chance that Karl-Anthony Towns gets moved by the trade deadline and I think they’ve got some years to figure that out as far as what that roster is going to be.”

The Athletic’s Jon Krawczynski, who covers the Timberwolves, backed up that sentiment despite the team’s recent struggles and a 14-22 record.

“I wouldn’t even characterize it as unhappy,” he said on 98.7 FM Thursday.

“I think there are frustrations when you lose. There’s no question about that but I don’t get the sense that it’s anywhere near a point of him saying, ‘This isn’t the place for me. I want out.'”

Krawczynski said he thinks that a potential link to Towns being the next Davis to get out their own situation would be somewhere like three years away.

While Deandre Ayton has played well at the start of his second season for the Phoenix Suns, he has yet to have a major impact consistently, which has created some dissatisfied fans given the expectations for Ayton as a No. 1 overall pick and the success of others in his draft class.

And with the happiness of Devin Booker always a worry, Towns being buddies with Booker creates the buzz and desire for Phoenix to make a run at the 24-year-old center, even though he’s very likely not available.

Towns has been one of the five best players at his position the past two seasons, this year averaging 26.5 points, 11.7 rebounds and 4.4 assists per game. He differentiates himself from every other dominant big in the league by being a marksman from three-point range, still maintaining elite efficiency at 41.8% despite raising his attempts per game from 4.6 to 8.5.

Like Booker, Towns is in the first year of the post-rookie contract max extension.


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