NBA trade targets: 5 realistic and 5 pipe dream options for teams to consider

LeBron James, Dejounte Murray
LeBron James, Dejounte Murray / Kevin C. Cox/GettyImages
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Pipe Dream Trade Target: Karl-Anthony Towns

The Minnesota Timberwolves have the best record in the Western Conference and are looking like contenders but their time atop the West may be short-lived. With rising superstar Anthony Edwards' rookie max contract kicking in next season, the Timberwolves will soon become one of the most expensive teams in the NBA despite being a small market.

That will almost certainly result in them looking to trade star Karl-Anthony Towns. At 28, and with four years remaining on his contract, he is the most likely player in Minnesota's core to be moved and they already have his successor, Naz Reid, under contract.

The New York Knicks have repeatedly been linked to Towns, and with the Wolves set to pay Rudy Gobert, Edwards, and Towns at least $30 million each, they would seem to be the most likely team to try to trade for him. However, with Minnesota enjoying a strong start to the season, they probably aren't looking to make a major move mid-season.

A deep playoff run might encourage the Timberwolves to hold off on breaking up their core, while an early exit might motivate them to see what offers are out there for Towns. Overall, while Towns could eventually be on the move, it seems unlikely that it will be this season.