Karl-Anthony Towns
Karl-Anthony Towns
22-Year-Old CenterC
Minnesota Timberwolves
2018 Fantasy Outlook
Towns was rightfully in the discussion to be the number one pick in many Fantasy leagues last season, and while he was not able to reach those lofty heights, it would be unfair to suggest he was a disappointment. While it took some time for Towns to gel with new teammate Jimmy Butler, he played in all 82 games for the third straight season and finished with averages of 21.3 points, 12.3 rebounds, 2.4 assists, 1.4 blocks and 0.8 steals per game. Towns' scoring numbers took a slight hit with the arrival of Butler, but unlike Andrew Wiggins, Towns was able to maintain his efficiency from both the field (54.5% FG) and the free-throw line (85.8% FT). Amazingly, Towns also finished the season as the Timberwolves' leading three-point shooter, hitting a very respectable 42.1 percent of his 3.5 attempts per game. As he did in his sophomore season, Towns seemed to get better as the season progressed. As he enters his fourth season, the hope is that Towns can continue to improve, particularly on the defensive end. Once again, Towns projects to be among the elites at his position when it comes to Fantasy production, though owners may be able to get him at a (very slight) bargain on the heels of an offseason laced with some uncertainty and internal dissension. Read Past Outlooks
$Signed a two-year, $11.66 million contract with the Timberwolves in July of 2015. Timberwolves exercised $6.22 million team option for 2017-18 in October of 2016. Timberwolves exercised $7.84 million team option for 2018-19 in October of 2017.
Working toward long-term extension
CMinnesota Timberwolves
July 11, 2018
Towns and the Timberwolves have engaged in discussions regarding a maximum contract extension, Michael Scotto of The Athletic reports.
ANALYSIS
Reports surfaced in late June of a rift between Towns and head coach Tom Thibodeau, but both men quickly refuted the accusations of discord, according to Jace Frederick of the St. Paul Pioneer Press reports. Towns' interest in re-signing on a long-term deal seemingly supports the idea that any discontent with the organization is overblown, though it's uncertain how far along player and team are in negotiations for the extension. Even if he doesn't put pen to paper on a new deal by the time the season starts, Towns will undoubtedly enter 2018-19 as a centerpiece of the Timberwolves and a worthy first-round selection in just about every format. Towns has yet to miss a game in his three NBA seasons and averaged 21.3 points, 12.3 rebounds, 2.4 assists, 1.5 three-pointers and 1.4 blocks in 35.6 minutes per game in 2017-18 while delivering a career-best 64.6 true shooting percentage.
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Karl-Anthony Towns NBA Stats
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Karl-Anthony Towns 2017–18 NBA Game Log
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Depth Chart Status
#1 Center
Minnesota Timberwolves Center Depth Chart
Average Fantasy Points
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Past Fantasy Outlooks
2017
2016
2015
Towns, the 2015-16 Rookie of the Year, burst onto the scene as a truly elite talent last season. He’s a transcendent player at the position, and is essentially the archetype for the “modern” center. While questions remain about his defensive ability, he still managed to average a combined 2.0 blocks and steals last season at age 21. Ultimately, his stats speak for themselves. Towns posted 25.1 points, 12.3 rebounds and 2.7 assists across 37.0 minutes per game. The 7-footer also shot 54.2 percent from the field and made 1.2 threes per game at a 36.7 percent clip. Along with his great shooting from the field comes an impressive 83.2 percent mark from the charity stripe – often a sore spot for otherwise dominant centers. While he may be relied upon less to score now that Jimmy Butler and Jeff Teague are in town, it seems doubtful they’ll take enough shots away from him to drop his Fantasy value significantly. Towns could just end up with a higher field-goal percentage, dropping volume in favor of efficiency. Regardless, he should once again be a top-10 overall Fantasy talent, with more than enough upside to warrant a top-five selection.
There simply aren’t enough superlatives to describe Towns’ transcendent rookie season, during which the No. 1 overall pick out of Kentucky improbably exceeded the vast expectations placed upon him. While coasting to unanimous Rookie of the Year honors, Towns suited up in all 82 games and averaged 18.3 points, 10.5 boards, 2.0 assists and 1.7 blocks per game while shooting 54.2 percent from the field and 81.1 percent from the free-throw line. In providing context to just how sensational Towns was, Shaquille O’Neal is the only other 20-year-old in NBA history to average 18 points and eight rebounds and shoot at least 49 percent from the field in a season. And unlike Shaq, Towns displayed some surprising touch from the outside, connecting on 30-of-88 (34.1%) three-point attempts. For a player this young who checks in at seven-feet tall, Towns is uncommonly polished, displaying impact ability on both sides of the court and impressive all-around efficiency. If there’s a nit to pick, Towns could stand to improve upon the 2.2 turnovers per game he averaged as a rookie, but with few flaws in his game beyond that, the big man already has the look of a potential superstar in the league. After averaging 15 or more shot attempts per game in the last three months of his rookie season, Towns should take on a larger role in the T-Wolves’ attack in Year 2, which figures to include an even greater flirtation with the three-point line. Add it all up and Towns makes for an excellent first-round cornerstone in all fantasy formats, particularly in leagues where the percentage categories are emphasized.
Towns enters the NBA as the first-overall pick in the 2015 NBA Draft and will team with budding star Andrew Wiggins to form a duo that Minnesota can rely on for years to come. The question for fantasy owners is whether that translates to a big rookie season for the big guy out of Kentucky? Last season as a freshman, Towns averaged 10.3 points, 6.7 rebounds, 1.1 assists, 0.5 steals, and 2.5 blocks in a mere 21 minutes per game. In Minnesota, Towns will likely start and be given every opportunity to succeed, but a loaded depth chart may rob Towns of full starter's minutes. Kevin Garnett, Nikola Pekovic, Adreian Payne, Anthony Bennett, and Gorgui Dieng are all candidates to see playing time at either power forward or center, putting Towns' minute distribution into question as he acclimates to life in the NBA. Where the former Kentucky Wildcat should make an instant impact for fantasy owners is in blocks. Towns posted an 11.5-percent block rate at Kentucky. To put that in perspective, the NBA-leader in block percent in 2014-15 was Utah Jazz center Rudy Gobert, who posted an outstanding 7.0 percent block rate. Clearly, Towns isn't going to bring that hefty block rate to the pros with him, but it does show that he's an elite shot-blocker. Towns is a great upside pick, but he's probably a few years away from becoming the dominant force he was drafted to be for the Timberwolves and for fantasy owners.
More Fantasy News
Finishes season with another double-double
CMinnesota Timberwolves
April 25, 2018
Towns had 23 points (9-14 FG, 1-2 3Pt, 4-4 FT), 14 rebounds, four assists and one block in 35 minutes during Wednesday's 122-104 loss to the Rockets.
ANALYSIS
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Leads team with 22 points in Game 4 loss
CMinnesota Timberwolves
April 23, 2018
Towns had 22 points (9-15 FG, 0-2 3Pt, 4-6 FT), 15 rebounds and two assists in 31 minutes during Monday's 119-100 loss to Houston.
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Double-doubles in crucial Game 3 victory
CMinnesota Timberwolves
April 21, 2018
Towns totaled 18 points (5-13 FG, 1-2 FT, 7-7 FT), 16 rebounds, three assists, two blocks and one steal in 38 minutes during Saturday's 121-105 victory over Houston.
ANALYSIS
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Disappoints on scoreboard again in Game 2
CMinnesota Timberwolves
April 19, 2018
Towns mustered just five points (2-9 FG, 1-3 3Pt, 0-2 FT) but added 10 rebounds, one steal and one block across 24 minutes during Minnesota's 102-82 loss to the Rockets in Game 2 of their Western Conference first-round playoff series.
ANALYSIS
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Struggles offensively in Game 1 loss
CMinnesota Timberwolves
April 16, 2018
Towns managed eight points (3-9 FG, 0-2 3Pt, 2-4 FT), 12 rebounds, two assists and one block across 40 minutes during Minnesota's 104-101 loss to the Rockets during Game 1 of their Western Conference first-round playoff series.
ANALYSIS
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