Coach Chris Finch and the Minnesota Timberwolves left it all on the court but came up short in a Western Conference Finals series loss to the Dallas Mavericks this past May, giving Wolves fans reason to believe the team could be back in even stronger next season.

The Timberwolves were exposed as a team that is simply a little too green at the guard and forward positions to keep paced with legendary stars like Luka Doncic and Kyrie Irving on the scoreboard, even with Anthony Edwards doing his thing as the ‘next Jordan' he has been anointed as in recent months.

The Timberwolves have the number 27 pick in the 2024 NBA Draft this month and there are plenty of intriguing projects to select. Coach Chris Finch, Anthony Edwards and the rest of the Timberwolves are likely to find themselves playing with a few new pieces to the championship puzzle next season, and the Draft could be the first chance to make it happen.

Recently, the Wolves' best prospects for the 27th pick were revealed. A shocking trade that could net the Timberwolves Brandon Ingram was also proposed.

The Wolves' biggest need is not the next sexy draft pick or free agent addition or blockbuster trade target. It's actually something that they can get by standing pat and not changing their current roster in the least bit.

The Timberwolves need refinement and experience

May 30, 2024; Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA; Minnesota Timberwolves guard Anthony Edwards (5) dribbles against Dallas Mavericks guard Kyrie Irving (11) during the second half in game five of the western conference finals for the 2024 NBA playoffs at Target Center.
© Bruce Kluckhohn-USA TODAY Sports

Virtually all NBA analysts agreed that Coach Chris Finch's team was one of the most talented in the NBA last season but the pieces didn't quite mesh together in the end.

The Timberwolves need to let their current recipe marinate in the oven and on the kitchen stove for a while, to use a few culinary terms, if they are to rise above the rest of the Western Conference contenders in 2023-2024.

The Timberwolves top two players, Edwards and Karl-Anthony Towns, are 22 and 28 years old, respectively. Rudy Gobert, the reigning Defensive Player of the Year winner, is 31 and appeared to find the fountain of youth last summer. Meanwhile Naz Reid, the Wolves' sharp-shooting big man, is just 24 years old, and defensive stopper Jaden McDaniels is just 23 years old.

Put it all together and the Timberwolves have a winning recipe. Now, it's incumbent upon Coach Finch and the rest of the Wolves to get in the lab and refine their games as much as possible this offseason because Luka Doncic and the Mavs are currently busy putting extra tread on their tires in hopes of winning an NBA championship.

Youth eventually wins out in the National Basketball Association and most analysts feel it's simply a matter of time before Edwards captures his first NBA league crown.

McDaniels must get stronger and wiser

McDaniels was hailed as a defensive stopper for much of the playoffs but ran into a buzzsaw against Doncic, Kyrie Irving and the Mavericks. His powerful defensive style lended itself well to an upset bid against the Denver Nuggets that was eventually successful, but there is still much work to be done on McDaniels' skillset. Rudy Gobert and Karl-Anthony Towns did their best to protect the basket but the Mavericks keyed in and got the job done.

The 2020 first round draft pick McDaniels scored over 10 points per game and shot nearly 49% from the field but the Wolves need him to evolve into a take-no-prisoners type of player on that side of the ball while improving incrementally on offense to compliment Edwards.

Minnesota might still be a year or two away from the NBA Finals, but they do appear on a collision course with destiny and few things can stop them except for an unforeseen setback or injury to someone like Rudy Gobert, Karl-Anthony Towns, Edwards, McDaniels or another key contributor.