While any team would be thrilled to land the No. 1 overall pick in the NBA Draft Lottery, the victory likely means as little to the Minnesota Timberwolves as it ever has to a lottery winner. There is no Zion Williamson in this draft class. No prospect is a guaranteed superstar, and the three players atop most draft boards aren't great fits with their current roster.
They just traded for D'Angelo Russell, so another point guard in LaMelo Ball would be suboptimal. Malik Beasley was so good down the stretch that replacing him with Anthony Edwards wouldn't make sense. Karl-Anthony Towns is so good that bringing in another center like James Wiseman hardly makes sense. None of the three figure to fix their immediate defensive woes.
So Minnesota is considering alternatives. According to The Athletic's Sam Vecenie, many around the NBA expect the Timberwolves to entertain trading the pick should the right offer present itself. If not, the choice will likely be made based on value over fit. In other words, it's either best player available or best value available for Minnesota.
While no suitors have yet presented themselves, there are some possible trade partners that make sense. The New York Knicks stand out due to their perceived interest in Ball. The Knicks have all of their own draft picks moving forward, plus two future first-rounders from the Dallas Mavericks and the No. 27 pick this season from the Toronto Raptors, so putting together a package seems entirely possible.
The issue Minnesota could encounter is that this will likely be a buyer's market for top picks. In addition to the relatively low value of this year's best prospects, the Golden State Warriors at No. 2 are widely expected to try to trade their own pick for veteran help. Unless a team is so enamored with a single prospect that they can't risk someone else taking him, Golden State's presence on the trade market allows prospective partners to potentially play the two teams off of one another in order to get the best possible price.
There is still plenty of time before the draft. Minnesota could fall in love with a single prospect, or their roster situation could change in a way that allows one of the best players available to fit better with what remains. But the Timberwolves have been one of the NBA's most aggressive teams since Gersson Rosas took over as head of basketball operations. Aside from Towns, no Timberwolf has been with the team for more than two seasons. Minnesota is going to be bold at the top of the draft. The top pick is unofficially for sale.