Skyrocketing NBA Team #1: Minnesota Timberwolves
After an uneven 2022–23 regular season, the Minnesota Timberwolves have gotten off to a much better start despite not having as big of an offseason as other contenders. Their biggest move saw them re-sign backup big man Naz Reid to a long-term deal but even without a splashy move, they have been far better than anyone expected.
A lot of that can be attributed to the plays of Rudy Gobert and Anthony Edwards. The Gobert trade was among the most polarizing in NBA history. While he had a down season last year, he has looked a lot more like the player that they hoped they were getting when they acquired him from the Utah Jazz.
They currently have the best defensive rating in the NBA this season, thanks largely to Gobert’s rim protection. Meanwhile, on the other end of the floor, they have been buoyed by Edwards’ superstar turn. Edwards is averaging 28.4 points, 6.2 rebounds, and 5.4 assists, all at the ripe age of 22, even drawing comparisons to the GOAT, Michael Jordan.
The results have the Timberwolves rolling, winning six straight games and boasting a 7-2 record after starting 4-5 last season. That is a great start, though they will need to address their 3-point shooting issues. That has contributed to their being a below-average offense even with Edwards and Karl-Anthony Towns. Still, they can try to add shooting later while they look to win the West.