Much has been made about the Golden State Warriors acquiring the second overall pick in the NBA Draft. As former champions who have run the league for a long time, it is expected that they make all the headlines.
But the Minnesota Timberwolves are the biggest winners in the NBA Draft. They have the first overall pick either draft one of the top three prospects (LaMelo Ball, James Wiseman, or Anthony Edwards) or make moves to acquire a third All-Star to pair with D’Angelo Russell and Karl-Anthony Towns.
The Timberwolves probably want the third All-Star immediately so they can begin climbing the ranks in the Western Conference. They did their best to acquire Russell, and now must continue their solid work to build a contender immediately.
Here are the five All-Star players that the Minnesota Timberwolves can acquire for the first overall pick.
5. Zach LaVine
25.5 PPG, 4.8 RPG, 4.2 APG, 1.5 SPG, 0.5 BPG
2020 was a career year for Zach LaVine and many teams are on the radar for acquiring him. He was already a hot prospect due to his athleticism and potential scoring ability, but he’s taking a big step up as a potential All-Star in the East. He is simply too good to be wasting his best years with the Chicago Bulls, who are not going anywhere at all.
Zach LaVine would be the third All-Star caliber player alongside Russell and Towns. LaVine is a player they both like, so they would get along like a house on fire on the court and off the court. For the sake of team chemistry and competitiveness, the Wolves can make the deal for LaVine.
4. Ben Simmons
16.4 PPG, 7.8 RPG, 8.0 APG, 2.1 SPG, 0.6 BPG
All-Star Ben Simmons is unfortunately out for the season due to leg surgery. He would not have made a difference for the Philadelphia 76ers anyways, because the East is very top-heavy with the lights of the Toronto Raptors and Milwaukee Bucks. With the Sixers getting swept in the first round, it may be time to break up the Ben Simmons- Joel Embiid duo.
Ben Simmons will handle the rock while Russell plays off the ball much more in Minnesota. Simmons would immediately improve the Wolves defense, playmaking, and rebounding as an oversized point guard or athletic point-forward. Simmons is also in the same age group as Russell and Towns, so this move would be a massive move for the team that would have three cornerstone players.
3. Donovan Mitchell
24.0 PPG, 4.4 RPG, 4.3 APG, 1.0 SPG, 1.0 BPG
Donovan Mitchell just seems to get better every year. Especially during the postseason, Mitchell performs at such a high level. His ability to score the ball in crunch moments makes him a very valuable prospect around the league. Mitchell also had another great season by averaging 24.0 PPG and being the undisputed leader of a contender in the Utah Jazz.
Mitchell, Towns, and Russell would make a very dominant big three in the West. Mitchell would be the go-to clutch player, the main scorer, and the one who takes the bulk of the pressure. Russell will do his thing as a shooter and playmaker, while Towns will prove he is one of the best big men in the game. This would be a massive trade for the Timberwolves.
2. Bradley Beal
30.5 PPG, 4.2 RPG, 6.1 APG, 1.2 SPG, 0.4 BPG
Arguably the second-best scorer in the NBA right now is Bradley Beal. He is averaging over 30 PPG on a team that is just a hot mess right now. John Wall does not look like he’s returning to action anytime soon, and even then the chemistry between himself and Beal has been questionable. It is officially time that the Washington Wizards make a move.
Bradley Beal gives the Timberwolves a 30 PPG scorer every single night. He can create his own shot, play off the ball, and take big shots down the stretch. Beal is already an All-Star and clearly the best scorer on the Wolves if he does get there. The trade package the Wizards are offering is very enticing to a rebuilding Washington squad that needs a mix of young talent and a valuable first overall pick.
1. Devin Booker
26.6 PPG, 4.2 RPG, 6.5 APG, 0.7 SPG, 0.3 BPG
Last but certainly at least, the Minnesota Timberwolves should do their best to acquire Devin Booker. While he may not have the numbers that Bradley Beal has, Booker has the potential to be a much better player. His scoring potential is something that is unique because he has improved leaps and bounds every single year. Booker is destined for greatness, and the Timberwolves just should throw everything on the table to get him.
Devin Booker is a very close friend with both Russell and Towns, in an era where close relationships dominate the NBA. Having three guys who love playing together makes sure that all three are happy while the GM tries to build a contender. With Booker on the squad, that process is sped up greatly. They can be the three cornerstone players while the team fills up the lineup with experienced players who can help the young guys grow. This is a must-happen for the sake of the Minnesota Timberwolves championship aspirations.