Anthony Edwards and the Minnesota Timberwolves are looking at a pressure-packed season as they look to make their second consecutive playoff appearance while looking to make the twin-towers duo of Karl-Anthony Towns and Rudy Gobert work in their favor.
One thing that the T-Wolves do know is that Edwards is a cornerstone and likely future face of the franchise. The third-year guard out Georgia has made himself a popular star not only for his high-flying playstyle but for his postgame quotes and affable personality off the court. This offseason alone, he’s already gone viral for his gunslinging with friends and was featured in a Sprite with Hawks star Trae Young.
However, Edwards isn’t just focused on having a great summer off the court. The Timberwolves star guard has reportedly looked like a “monster” over the summer.
With the help of his brother, Bubba, his longtime trainer Justin Holland, player development coach Chris Hines, Edwards has been working on improving aspects of his game like his long distance shooting, defense, and taking another step in his evolution as a playmaker. Coach Chris Finch also wants Edwards to improve as closer and all-around player over the offseason too.
“I’ve been working on everything, man,” Edwards said per Jon Krawczynski. “Just getting better. I’m trying to take that leap this year and be the best player I can be. Trying to take my team as far as we can.”
With the addition of Gobert to the lineup, Minnesota’s guards will be playing with a premiere pick-and-roll player that is sublime at finishing dump offs and alley ops. The Wolves are thin at point guard. D’Angelo Russell and Jordan McLaughlin are the main floor generals, so Edwards will be tasked with not only being a walking bucket, but with making his teammates job of scoring easier off his passes.
Furthermore, Minnesota belives that Gobert can unlock another level of Ant-Man’s game as the one of the NBA’s best screeners, best rebounders, and an elite rim protector that won three DPOY’s (2018-2019, 2021). With Gobert’s screens forcing switches or freeing Edwards up for buckets, the Timberwolves, will see another level of elite play.
Defensively, the T-Wolves hope that Edwards and Jaden McDaniels can continue to evolve into elite defenders. The task will help Gobert who’s become the subject of criticsm for not being as stout defensively on switches as he is in the paint. If Edwards and McDaniels can eliminate the need for Gobert to guard speedy guards on the perimeter, Minnesota could have a stout defense capable of shutting down any NBA offense.
“I feel like after probably a year or two more I will understand everything I need to do in the summertime to be the best I can be,” Edwards said. “Right now, I’m figuring it out. It’s going pretty good.”
🐺 @theantedwards_ was feeling it in his playoff debut dropping 36 points to give the @Timberwolves the 1-0 series lead!— NBA (@NBA) April 16, 2022
36 PTS | 6 AST | 2 BLK | 4 3PM
GAME 2: T-WOLVES/GRIZZLIES
Tues. 8:30pm/et on NBA TV#NBAPlayoffs presented by Google Pixel pic.twitter.com/iyE4Jet5Fj
Last season, Edwards averaged 21.3 points, 4.8 rebounds, and 3.8 assists per game on 52.7 percent shooting from the field and 35.7 percent from beyond the arc. Ant-Man was a key cog in Minnesota winning 46 games and qualifying for the playoffs for the first time in four seasons. Although the Wolves were eliminated in six games, the young team learned a lot about closing out games and being able to capitalize on cementing leads.
After a huge summer of fun and development, Minnesota and its fan will hope that Edwards, Towns, and Gobert can lead the Timberwolves to a new level of excellence.
“I feel like I’m working extremely hard, harder than I’ve ever worked before,” Edwards said. “I’m just happy with the results right now. I’m happy to see what it leads to on the court.”