After ending their 13-year playoff drought, the Minnesota Timberwolves have once again missed the postseason, ending the 2018-19 NBA season as the No. 11 seed in the deep Western Conference. However, despite suffering another huge disappointment, the Timberwolves aren’t expected to easily give up on their dream of winning their first NBA championship title in the Karl-Anthony Towns era. In the 2019 NBA offseason, the Timberwolves are planning to surround Towns with quality players that could boost their chance of returning to the postseason and bringing home the Larry O’Brien Trophy to Minnesota.
One of the areas that the Timberwolves need to improve is the point guard position. According to Dan Favale of Bleacher Report, the Timberwolves should consider pairing Karl-Anthony Towns with a point guard who can efficiently shoot the ball off the dribble. Favale suggested that the Timberwolves could target Mike Conley of the Memphis Grizzlies.
“Towns has never played with a point guard comfortable shooting off the dribble. Pairing him with Conley would open new dimensions to the half-court offense and noticeably elevate Minnesota in the Western Conference.”
In the proposed trade from Bleacher Report, the Timberwolves will be sending a package including Josh Okogie, Gorgui Dieng, Jeff Teague, the No. 11 pick in the 2019 NBA Draft, and at least one future second-round pick to the Grizzlies in exchange for Mike Conley. For the deal to work under the NBA’s collective bargaining agreement, the Grizzlies will be needing to add more players to match the Timberwolves’ outgoing salary.
As the NBA Finals begin, it's clear Marc Gasol didn't forget Memphis and Memphis didn't forget him. But what does his success mean for Mike Conley? https://t.co/YEA03h9SNx— USA TODAY NBA (@usatodaynba) May 30, 2019
Mike Conley will undeniably be an upgrade over Jeff Teague. He may already but in his early 30s, but he still hasn’t shown any sign of slowing down and remains as one of the best point guards in the NBA. In 70 games he played with the Grizzlies this season, Conley averaged 21.1 points, 6.4 assists, and 1.3 steals on 43.8 percent shooting from the field and 36.4 percent shooting from beyond the arc.
The deal will not only be beneficial for the Timberwolves but also for the Grizzlies. In exchange for Mike Conley, the Grizzlies will be receiving a young and talented player in Josh Okogie and future draft picks that could help them speed up the rebuilding process. The Grizzlies may only view Jeff Teague as a salary cap filler and an expiring contract, but he could serve as a good mentor to Ja Morant, whom Memphis is expected to select later this month using the No. 2 overall pick in the 2019 NBA Draft.