Karl-Anthony Towns

Karl-Anthony Towns

27-Year-Old CenterC
Minnesota Timberwolves
Out
Injury Calf
Est. Return 1/2/2023
2022 Fantasy Outlook
Towns again shined last season, averaging 24.6 points, 9.8 rebounds, 3.6 assists and 2.0 three-pointers. Though those numbers were slightly down compared to the previous campaign, the big man was a more valuable fantasy asset because he stayed healthy. After missing significant time each of the prior two seasons, Towns played in 74 of Minnesota's 82 games last year, with most of his missed time coming from entering the league's health and safety protocols in late December. Though Towns doesn't put up the assist numbers of Nikola Jokic and falls a little short of the scoring output of Joel Embiid, his ability to shoot the ball from deep exceeds that of his fellow elite big men. Towns proved his shooting prowess in last year's Three-Point Contest during All-Star Weekend, becoming the first center ever to win the shootout. During the regular season, he was one of only three players -- and the only center -- to average at least two triples per contest and shoot over 50 percent from the field overall. And Towns contributes on defense as well; he's averaged over a block per contest in each of his seven NBA seasons and posted a steal per game last year, to boot. The big question fantasy managers will need to consider when deciding where to draft Towns for the coming campaign is how the addition of Rudy Gobert will impact his numbers. Gobert tends to clog up the lanes and dominate the boards, so it wouldn't be surprising for Towns' rebounds and blocks to dip a bit. On the other hand, Towns should have even more opportunities to space the floor and fire away from deep, which could be a boon if he can keep his percentage from three-point range above 40 percent, as he has four of the past five seasons. Read Past Outlooks
$Signed a three-year, $162.16 million contract extension with the Timberwolves in July of 2022. Contract includes $62.06 million player option for 2027-28.
Personal Bio/PreCareer Summary

Karl-Anthony Towns was born in Edison, New Jersey in 1995. The son of Jaqueline and Karl Towns, who played basketball at Monmouth University, Karl-Anthony showed off his prodigious basketball talent at a young age. By fifth grade, he was already practicing with the Piscataway Technical High junior varsity team. By the time Towns got to St. Joseph High School in Metuchen, New Jersey, he was already a superstar, and he led his team to state championships as a freshman, sophomore and junior. Towns connected on 127 three-pointers over the course of his final three high school seasons and was named to the All-State team three consecutive times. In his last year at St. Joseph's, Towns averaged 20.9 points, 13.4 rebounds and 6.2 blocks per game, shooting 66.1 percent from the field and 82.2 percent from the free throw line. Even more impressively, the academic standout left high school with a 3.96 GPA. He chose the University of Kentucky over the likes of Duke, Florida and Kansas. Towns' family runs the KAT Team Foundation, which endeavors "to create a scholarship fund for young adults throughout the United States and increase literacy in underserved communities." As a rookie in the NBA, he partnered with the Salvation Army in January of 2016 to launch a shoe drive, offering Timberwolves tickets in exchange for donations of new and unused shoes. For Thanksgiving in 2017, Towns donated $10,000 to the Minnesota House of Charity Food Centre to fund holiday meals for families and people in need. Towns represents the Dominican Republic on the international stage; in 2018, he and fellow Dominican Al Horford were both named All-Stars, marking the first time two players with ties to the DR played in one All-Star Game. You can follow Towns on Twitter @KarlTowns and on Instagram @karltowns. Towns' single season in college was an impactful one, as he was named the 2014-15 SEC Rookie of the Year while making both the All-SEC first team and the SEC All-Freshman squad. The Piscataway, New Jersey native paced Kentucky in rebounds (6.7) and blocks (2.3) per game, and his 10.3 points per game ranked second on the squad. Towns led the Wildcats to an SEC Tournament title win over Arkansas, then helped the team to the NCAA Tournament Final Four before losing to Wisconsin -- the lone loss for Kentucky that season. Towns announced for the 2015 NBA Draft after his freshman year and was selected with the first overall pick by the Minnesota Timberwolves.

Out 4-to-6 weeks with strained calf
CMinnesota Timberwolves
Calf
November 29, 2022
Towns is expected to be sidelined for 4-to-6 weeks after suffering a right calf strain in Monday's loss to the Wizards, Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN reports.
ANALYSIS
Towns exited in the third quarter of Monday's game and needed to be helped off the floor after suffering the injury, as he was unable to put weight on his leg. Though Towns appears to have avoided a season-ending injury and could return as soon as late December, Wojnarowski's report suggests sometime in January is a more realistic target for the big man. Since Towns doesn't play center as much these days with Rudy Gobert around, it's unclear how much reserve center Naz Reid will benefit. Instead, Kyle Anderson and Taurean Prince (shoulder) could be likelier candidates to see increased run, and Jaylen Nowell may be a fringe beneficiary. The Minnesota rotation is worth monitoring, and fantasy managers with Sunday waiver claims will get to see two games -- Wednesday against the Grizzlies and Saturday against the Thunder -- before making any decisions.
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4 days ago
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4 days ago
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Latest Fantasy Rumors
Likely out until January
CMinnesota Timberwolves
November 29, 2022
Towns has been diagnosed with a right calf strain and is expected to be sidelined for 4-to-6 weeks, Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN reports.
ANALYSIS
The veteran big man played only 22 minutes against the Wizards on Monday before exiting, and imaging taken Tuesday confirmed the severity of the injury. With Towns probably out until some time in January, Rudy Gobert will see increased responsibility in the Minnesota frontcourt, while Kyle Anderson will likely fill in at power forward.
See All NBA Rumors
Past Fantasy Outlooks
2021
2020
2019
2018
2017
2016
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Towns appeared in just 50 games last season, mainly due to COVID-19 protocols, but he still put together a great campaign when on the court. He ranked eighth in per-game fantasy production, averaging 24.8 points, 10.6 rebounds, 4.5 assists and 1.9 combined blocks-plus-steals. He also retained his excellent shooting efficiency with splits of 49/38/86, though it was technically his second-worst season from a true-shooting percentage (61.2) standpoint. Heading into 2021-22, Towns will remain the top offensive option for a struggling Timberwolves team that desperately needs every ounce of production he's able to provide. He should at least be able to cede some responsibilities to emerging sophomore Anthony Edwards and D'Angelo Russell, but the team is so devoid of offensive ability outside of that trio that Towns will unquestionably need to still average roughly 25/10/5. Looking through the noise of the Wolves' team struggles and Towns' subpar defense, the reality is that he's one of the best fantasy players in the NBA, and he deserves to be locked in as a first-round pick in every draft.
Towns is coming off arguably his best season, averaging 26.5 points, 10.8 rebounds, 4.4 assists, 3.3 threes, 1.2 blocks and 0.9 steals. In eight-category fantasy leagues, that was good for a third-best ranking on a per-game basis. The issue was that Towns missed significant action for the first time in his career, appearing in just 35 games due to knee and wrist injuries. The Timberwolves got some help for Towns for the 2020-21 season, trading for D'Angelo Russell at last season's deadline, trading for Ricky Rubio during the 2020 offseason, and drafting Anthony Edwards. The result could be a heavy pick-and-roll and pick-and-pop scheme. That should lead to easier looks for Towns, who has often been forced to create by himself. Fantasy managers should expect similar production from KAT, if not marginally improved, heading into 2020-21. He's already one of the most efficient scoring bigs in the league, shooting 50.8 percent from the field, 41.2 from three and 79.6 from the free-throw line in 2019-20. While he doesn't have the reputation of someone like Anthony Davis, he's not that far off from a fantasy standpoint, and drafting Towns within the Top 5 is a relatively safe bet.
Set to turn 24 years old in 2019-20, Towns is coming off two straight All-Star appearances. Over the past two seasons, he's averaged 22.8 points, 12.4 rebounds, 2.9 assists and 1.5 blocks. Maybe most impressive is his efficiency, with Towns shooting 53.1 percent from the field, 40.9 percent from deep and 84.6 percent from the free-throw line as an All-Star. While his production hasn't translated into wins for the Timberwolves, he's undoubtedly one of the best big men in the league on the offensive side of the ball, capable of scoring from anywhere on the court. In 2018-19, he registered 20 performances with at least 30 points, not to mention three 40-point efforts. Minnesota didn't add any high-usage players during the offseason, so Towns' role should be secure. Health is also valuable in fantasy, and Towns has been excellent at staying on the court. He didn't miss a game through his first three seasons, and while he played 77 games last year, he only missed time due to a car accident. Despite not being an All-NBA player, there's plenty of justification for Towns to be the first center off the board in fantasy drafts.
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.
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
Diagnosed with calf strain
CMinnesota Timberwolves
Calf
November 28, 2022
Towns left Monday's game against the Wizards due to a right calf strain, Shams Charania of The Athletic reports.
ANALYSIS
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Exits Monday's contest early
CMinnesota Timberwolves
Leg
November 28, 2022
Towns exited Monday's contest against Washington in the third quarter due to a non-contact right leg injury, Josh Robbins of The Athletic reports.
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Stuggles in loss
CMinnesota Timberwolves
November 26, 2022
Towns recorded 19 points (6-22 FG, 1-11 3PT, 6-7 FT), four rebounds, five assists and two blocks across 37 minutes in Friday's 110-108 loss to the Hornets.
ANALYSIS
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Near triple-double in win
CMinnesota Timberwolves
November 23, 2022
Towns closed with 23 points (8-11 FG, 1-1 3Pt, 6-7 FT), 11 rebounds, eight assists, two blocks and two steals across 37 minutes during Wednesday's 115-101 win over the Pacers.
ANALYSIS
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Drops team-high 25 points
CMinnesota Timberwolves
November 21, 2022
Towns finished with 25 points (8-15 FG, 2-8 3Pt, 7-8 FT), eight rebounds, nine assists, one block and one steal over 34 minutes before fouling out of Monday's 105-101 win over the Heat.
ANALYSIS
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