Timberwolves star Karl-Anthony Towns doesn’t expect to have any issues shifting from center to power forward when he plays alongside new teammate Rudy Gobert in 2022/23. As Towns tells Colin Ward-Henninger of CBS Sports, playing at the four is something he has gotten accustomed to doing over the course of his career.
“The last time I had something like this, obviously I had Gorgui Dieng, I played (power forward) a lot of years in the NBA. Fans forgot that. It’s OK,” he said. “And go back to me in college. This is how I played in college. Willie Cauley-Stein is like 7’2″. I don’t know what they’re missing in that.”
While Towns is far from the league’s most effective perimeter defender, he said he’s looking forward to the challenge of taking on those assignments. The All-NBA big man added that he expects talent to win out as he and Gobert attempt to develop chemistry.
“I think that Rudy’s one of the best defensive players we’ve ever had in the NBA. He has the hardware to prove it,” Towns told Henninger. “I think I’m one of the best offensive players and talents the NBA has ever seen. So putting us together gives us really a whole spectrum of talent to use.”
Here’s more from around the Northwest:
- Having appeared in just 54 games as a rookie, Thunder guard Josh Giddey has spent a lot of time in the gym and the weight room this summer preparing his body to withstand the rigors of an 82-game schedule, he told Matthew Sullivan of News.com.au. “It’s a long season so taking care of your body is a really important part of being an NBA player,” Giddey said, adding that he feels “ready to go” after missing the end of last season due to a hip issue.
- New Jazz forward Jarred Vanderbilt spoke to Spencer Davies of BasketballNews.com about his fresh start in Utah, his impressions of new teammate Collin Sexton, and playing alongside Malik Beasley on a third team, among other topics. Vanderbilt said he’s looking forward to getting the chance to “expand and grow” his game with the Jazz.
- In a mailbag for The Denver Post (subscription required), Mike Singer considers whether the Nuggets could realistically claim the No. 1 seed in the West, examines what the second unit might look like, and explains why the team re-signed Vlatko Cancar rather than pursuing a free agent like Juancho Hernangomez.