Towns led Minnesota with 23 points (8-18 FG, 2-5 3PT), seven rebounds, three assists, two steals and two blocks in a 113-101 loss to the Oklahoma City Thunder on Friday.
The two steals and two blocks may be the most encouraging part about this stat line, as Towns has been criticized for his lackluster defense throughout his career. He's already a double-double machine and defensive stats like these would only add to his already impressive top-10 value. The fact that Jimmy Butler may be traded only adds to Towns' intrigue too, as he's undoubtedly the go-to guy in Minnesota right now.
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.
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.
Towns did all he could Wednesday but it was not enough as the Wolves fell out of the playoffs after a 122-104 loss to the Rockets. Towns struggled across the first couple of games but worked things out down the stretch and it is all a learning experience for the third-year superstar. The Wolves will need to have a look at their team-build over the off-season but no matter the outcome, Towns is going to remain the focal point for the foreseeable future.
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.
Towns fared well in the Game 4 loss, finishing with a series-best 22 points. The Wolves were blown out in the third quarter and many of the starters saw reduced playing time because of this. Towns has been steadily improving as the series has progressed and he will need to be at his best if the Wolves hope to win in Houston and force a sixth game back home in Minnesota.
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.
Towns got off to another slow start, failing to score a single point in the entire first quarter. He slowly got things going, however, putting up his best line of the post-season so far. He appeared far more aggressive on the offensive end which had a positive effect on his defensive plays. He appeared far more energized in this one and the Wolves are going to need him to be at his best if they hope to head back to Houston locked at two.
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