Things haven't been easy for the Minnesota Timberwolves this season. They're off to a disappointing 10-11 start, which has resulted from the team's struggles to successfully integrate offseason acquisition Rudy Gobert, and things got even worse Monday night when the Timberwolves battled the Washington Wizards. Trailing in the third quarter, Karl-Anthony Towns crumpled to the floor with an apparent non-contact injury as he was running back up the court following a made jumper by Kyle Kuzma.
Towns was helped off the court and did not put any pressure on his leg as he exited into the locker room. He was ruled out for the remainder of the game with a right calf sprain. Imaging on Tuesday confirmed the calf sprain, and Towns is expected to miss 4-6 weeks of action as a result, according to Adrian Wojnarowski. With that timeline, Towns will likely return to action in January.
You can see the play where the injury occurred below:
Towns is having a down year statistically as his team is working on integrating Gobert. Towns' scoring (21.4 points per game) and rebounding (8.5) are both down meaningfully from where they've been over the past few seasons, and his normally stellar shooting has been in a season-long slump. Yet Towns is still Minnesota's second-leading scorer, and the threat he poses as a shooter is what makes Minnesota's two-big lineups possible.
With Towns out for several weeks, the Timberwolves will be more reliant than ever on Gobert and third-year guard Anthony Edwards. This team already ranked 26th in 3-point percentage with Towns in the fold, so scoring without him will surely be a challenge. Now, the Wolves will just have to try to tread water in a competitive Western Conference until Towns is able to return.