Alex Caruso sees strong similarities between newly renovated Timberwolves and 2020 Lakers

Peter Dewey
3 Min Read

The Minnesota Timberwolves made a major splash earlier this offseason by acquiring three-time Defensive Player of the Year Rudy Gobert from the Utah Jazz in a blockbuster trade.

Gobert will now play alongside All-Star big man Karl-Anthony Towns with the Timberwolves.

While some have wondered how the two will fit together, current Chicago Bulls guard Alex Caruso sees some similarities between the current Timberwolves and the Los Angeles Lakers team that won the NBA title during the 2019-20 season. Caruso was a key defender and role player for the Lakers during that season.

Caruso explained why the two teams are similar during an episode of “The Old Man and the Three” podcast.

“You know what it reminds me a lot about?” Caruso said. “It reminds me a lot of the L.A. team when we won the championship.

“We would start A.D. (Anthony Davis) at the 4, save his body a little bit, don’t have him bang with the 5s the whole season, 82 games, ’cause that’s a grind, right?”

Caruso explained that by doing that, the Lakers helped keep some wear and tear off of Davis by having him do less dirty work down low.

“It just reminds me of us having JaVale [McGee] and Dwight [Howard] to kind of do some of that dirty work,” Caruso said.

Caruso did say that the Timberwolves could use Towns at the center position to spread teams out and play their own brand of small ball, but he likes the fit of Gobert in Minnesota.

“I think the fit is great ’cause Gobert does all the things that K.A.T. doesn’t really do well, and I think K.A.T. does things that Gobert doesn’t do well,” Caruso said. “I think it’s a good mesh. It’ll just be interesting to see how it works when it comes down to the fourth quarter, winning time, what their best lineup is.”

The Timberwolves earned the No. 7 seed in the Western Conference last season, but they are clearly hoping that Gobert will help take them to new heights in the conference.

The Lakers were able to win a title with a similar big man rotation, albeit they also had LeBron James, and it’s possible the Timberwolves make a deep run in the postseason now that Gobert and Towns are teammates.

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Peter is a graduate of Quinnipiac University where he covered the MAAC and college basketball for three years. He has worked for NBC Sports, the Connecticut Sun and the Meriden Record-Journal covering basketball and other major sports. Follow him on Twitter @peterdewey2.