Money committed to Karl-Anthony Towns, Andrew Wiggins is second largest to any NBA two players
The Minnesota Timberwolves are banking on Karl-Anthony Towns and Andrew Wiggins to lead the team to the promised land.
After signing Towns to a five-year, $190 million extension Saturday evening, the Timberwolves now have $337 million committed to him and Wiggins. Only the Oklahoma City Thunder have more money committed to two players (Russell Westbrook, Paul George). Wiggins re-signed with the Timberwolves in the summer of 2017 on a five-year deal worth in excess of $146 million.
$337 Million owed to Karl-Anthony Towns and Andrew Wiggins.
Only OKC (Westbrook & George, $343M) has more committed to any two players.
— Josh Eberley 🇨🇦 (@JoshEberley) September 23, 2018
Towns averaged 21.3 points, 12.3 rebounds, and 2.4 assists per game last season, shooting 54.5 percent from the field and 42.1 percent from long distance. He also made his first All-Star team. Wiggins, meanwhile, averaged 17.7 points, 4.4 rebounds, and 2.0 assists per game, shooting 43.8 percent from the floor and 33.1 percent from beyond the arc.
The Timberwolves are in the process of trying to trade Jimmy Butler, who has requested out. Whatever haul Minnesota gets for Butler, one thing is clear now: Towns and Wiggins are the two best players on the team and they have to take their games to the next level given how much money they are owed.
There’s been a negative narrative surrounding Wiggins and Towns this offseason, even though it’s most likely come from Butler’s camp. Wiggins’ work ethic and passion for the game have been questioned, while Towns has been accused of being more concerned about his stats instead of winning games.
But here’s one thing people don’t take into consideration. While Butler is a good player, a case could be made his arrival to Minnesota hindered the development of Wiggins and Towns.
After averaging a career-high 23.6 points per game during the 2016-17 season, Wiggins’ scoring output dropped to 17.7 last season with the addition of Butler. Towns averaged 25.1 points per game in 2016-17 without Butler on the team. That number dropped to 21.3 playing alongside Butler.
Wiggins and Towns will get more shot attempts moving forward, but both players need to work on their individual games and mature, both on and off the court. Putting up big stats is nice and flashy, but Towns and Wiggins owe it to the Timberwolves’ organization to deliver victories and go on deep playoff runs with the amount of money they are being paid.