NBA playoffs

Timberwolves vow to ‘be back next year’ but offseason questions loom large


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Timberwolves vow to ‘be back next year’ but offseason questions loom large

TRIO. Minnesota Timberwolves center Rudy Gobert (27) and center Karl-Anthony Towns (32) and guard Anthony Edwards (5) celebrate during the second half against the Dallas Mavericks in game four of the western conference finals for the 2024 NBA playoffs at American Airlines Center.

Jerome Miron/USA TODAY Sports/Reuters

Questions for the Timberwolves' offseason include whether an ownership change might bring major moves to cut costs

Minnesota Timberwolves All-Star Anthony Edwards felt the intense spotlight of being in the Western Conference finals for the first time but vowed it wouldn’t be his last following the Dallas Mavericks’ Game 5 win on Thursday.

Karl-Anthony Towns scored 28 points and pulled down 12 rebounds to lead Minnesota, but the Mavericks took control early, led by 30 in the third quarter, and advanced to the NBA Finals with a 124-103 win in Minneapolis.

“We’ll be back next year,” Edwards said.

“It’s a lot of our guys’ first time being in this light, especially me. It’s my first time. But we’ll be ready, man. We’ll be all right. First time. Took a loss. Congratulations to the Mavericks. But we’ll be back. We’ll be all right.”

Edwards also finished with 28 points for the Timberwolves, whose magical season ended after winning 56 games in the regular season and reaching the conference finals for the first time since 2004.

Towns had a forgettable first three games in the conference finals, then averaged 26.5 points in the final two games. He’s hoping to be part of the future of the franchise entering his 10th season.

“I’m confident I’ll be able to be here with my brothers and continue what I love to do here at home,” Towns said. “So that’s the plan. Nothing has changed on my side. I love this city. I love this organization. I love this city. It’s given me my life, me and my family.”

Questions for the offseason include whether an ownership change might bring major moves to cut costs. If so, Towns would be a candidate to be traded with four years remaining on his existing contract and Edwards fully established as the face of the franchise going forward.

“That’s not for me to worry about,” Towns said.

Roster decisions are coming sooner than any decision in the ownership battle being litigated between expected future owners Alex Rodriguez and Marc Lore and current boss Glen Taylor.

Minnesota picks at No. 27 in the first round of the NBA draft in June and one player in the playoff rotation – guard Kyle Anderson – can become a free agent.

Edwards knows he doesn’t control the cast around him, but plans to work to return to this position next year.

“It’s fun, man. I’m looking forward to being right back in this situation next year,” Edwards said. –

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