Knicks reportedly uninterested in swapping defensive big man for elite Timberwolves superstar

Minnesota Timberwolves center Karl-Anthony Towns (32) looks to pass the ball against New York Knicks center Mitchell Robinson (23) during the third quarter at Madison Square Garden
Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

As the New York Knicks look to pull off another blockbuster deal, a recent report suggests that the franchise is not willing to part with their franchise center in exchange for another franchise center.

Knicks don’t want to include Mitchell Robinson in Karl-Anthony Towns trade

Action Network’s Matt Moore reported that the Knicks are uninterested in trading Mitchell Robinson if they were to set up a package to acquire Timberwolves star Karl-Anthony Towns. Robinson played in 21 games this season before a fractured ankle that required surgery sidelined for likely the rest of the season.

“Multiple sources said the Knicks have indicated they want to start Towns next to Robinson, similar to how the Wolves have had what some considered surprising success with Towns next to Gobert,” said Moore.

The Knicks have been tied to Towns for some time

Earlier this week, The Athletic’s Shams Charania reported that the Knicks will always have a level of interest in the star big man, but that nothing significant has materialized despite that interest level.

The Knicks’ blockbuster last week that saw them land OG Anunoby could be seen as a sign that the organization is ready to build a contender right now, and Towns is a name that has been linked to them since last season.

The Timberwolves are dominating the Western Conference right now with a 24-9 record and the no. 1 seed, but questions about Towns’ long-term fit with the organization have been prevalent for some time, especially after the acquisition of Rudy Gobert two offseasons ago and Anthony Edwards’ prominent rise to stardom.

Towns is playing at an All-Star level this season, averaging 21.4 points and 9.1 rebounds while shooting 50% from the floor and 40% from three. However, limitations to his game on the defensive side of the ball as well as a lucrative contract make such a trade very high risk.

Acquiring Towns would almost certainly mean Randle departs

On top of that, if the Knicks do in fact envision playing Towns next to Robinson, that would certainly spell the end for Julius Randle’s tenure with new York, so they will have to strongly consider who they want leading their frontcourt for the long haul.

The Knicks will continue to search for that final missing piece to become a true finals contender, but Towns and New York don’t appear to be a match made in heaven at this time. Things could change as the trade deadline approaches, but for now, the idea that Towns will join the Knicks is becoming less realistic.

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