The Minnesota Timberwolves have desperately missed Karl-Anthony Towns in the seven games the All-Star center has been sidelined due to a knee injury. In that span, the Wolves have gone 2-5, plummeting further down the standings in the Western Conference. Minnesota was already struggling when Towns was on the floor. Without him, however, they've absolutely floundered against inferior competition, including losses to the Golden State Warriors and Cleveland Cavaliers.
It also doesn't help that Andrew Wiggins has missed the past two games with an illness, and is also expected to be out for Minnesota's Wednesday night's game against the Milwaukee Bucks. However, Towns is the centerpiece of this team, and without him, the identity for the Wolves changes. While there's no timetable for Towns' return yet, he has begun on-court work, as reported by Jon Krawczynski of The Athletic.
This is a positive sign for a team that relies heavily on Towns' offensive production. When he isn't on the floor, the Wolves' offensive rating drops from 115.7 to 97.7. Towns is averaging a career high in points (26.5) and assists (4.4) while grabbing 11.7 rebounds a night for Minnesota. Since he's been sidelined, Wiggins had taken on the role as the Wolves' No. 1 option, averaging 23.8 points and 6.6 rebounds in that span.
Towns hurt his knee against the Los Angeles Clippers on Dec. 13, where he put up 39 points before falling hard after a dunk attempt over Montrezl Harrell in the fourth quarter and eventually leaving the game. He was diagnosed with a sprained left knee, and was listed as day-to-day at the time.
The Wolves desperately need Towns to return soon if they have any hope at turning this season around. There's already been rumors swirling aboutand if this team keeps losing, those rumors could begin to gain some traction.