Karl-Anthony Towns Viewed as Possible Target for the Heat

Karl-Anthony Towns

Getty Karl-Anthony Towns reacts to questionable call.

The Ringer’s Zach Kram predicted the Miami Heat will pull off a blockbuster trade this offseason to land a superstar, calling Minnesota Timberwolves All-Star big man Karl-Anthony Towns a possible target.

“Contrary to their reputation, the Miami Heat haven’t brought on a new star in five years,” Kram wrote in an April 22 story titled “2024 NBA Playoff Predictions: Finals Picks, Upsets, and Summer Blockbusters.” They’ve added good players since signing and trading for Jimmy Butler in 2019 — post-prime Kyle Lowry, post-prime P.J. Tucker, Terry Rozier — but no stars.

“That will change this summer, once the Butler-less Heat are eliminated early and Pat Riley decides to bolster a roster that has struggled through two regular seasons — and thus earned a much more challenging playoff path — in a row,” Kram added. The Heat were eliminated from the first round of Eastern Conference playoffs by their rivals the Boston Celtics.

Kram wrote that the Timberwolves would most likely unload several salaries on their payroll as they try to avoid paying a massive luxury tax bill under the new collective bargaining agreement.

He wrote that the Wolves’ dire financial situation may open the door for the Heat and other potential trade suitors to check on the availability of Towns, who is under contract through 2026-27 (player option in 2027-28) and set to make $49.4 million next year, according to Spotrac.

“Maybe they’ll deal with the potentially cash-strapped Timberwolves for Karl-Anthony Towns, who can give the Heat a scorer and spacer while partnering with another elite big man defender, as in his current successful partnership with Rudy Gobert. (Though former teammate Butler might not want to play with KAT again.),” Kram wrote.

Timberwolves’ Financial Situation Makes Karl-Anthony Towns the Odd Man Out

Anthony Edwards’ rookie-scale extension worth $204.4 million over five years will kick in next season, leaving the Timberwolves with a major decision to make whether to retain the core of Edwards and Towns or make a trade for salary cap relief.

Together, the Edwards and Towns will make $84.6 million next year, or 60% of the projected $141 million salary cap for the team.

An anonymous Eastern Conference GM told the Ringer’s Howard Beck also predicted the Wolves to break up their core and trade Towns.

“I think it happens this summer [Karl-Anthony Towns trade],” the GM predicted in Beck’s article, published February 14.

Reggie Miller Thinks Towns Is the Key Factor to Force Game 7

TNT’s Reggie Miller said the Timberwolves’ season will rest on the broad shoulders of Towns as they try to fend off elimination at the hands of the Denver Nuggets in Game 6, scheduled for May 16.

“For Minnesota – Karl Anthony Towns has to play at an elite level. I think he’s forcing things. Miller said May 14 on “The Dan Patrick Show.” “But I give Denver a lot of credit because they’re playing him with smaller defenders, and they are baiting him to play bully-ball down low and it’s just not working. If he continues to shoot how he’s been shooting, this series will be over in the next two games. So he’s gotta find a way to be efficient … has to be much better.”

Towns put up dominant numbers in the series’ first two games, averaging 23.5 points on a 64.1 field goal percentage and 55% 3-point field goal percentage. However, his production significantly dropped in Games 3 and 4, posting 13.5 points on 42.5 FG% and 52.0 3PT%.

Towns put up better numbers in Game 5 with 23 points on 53 FG% but he exited the court limping with 1:23 left in the first quarter. He checked back into the game and finished the game. According to CBS Sports, Towns re-aggravated his left knee, which was surgically repaired in March.