Williams to the T-Wolves

The wait for Derrick Williams did not last long, as the Minnesota Timberwolves took him with the second pick of Thursday's draft.

The Minnesota Timberwolves made former Arizona Wildcats' forward Derrick Williams the second overall pick in the 2011 NBA Draft on Thursday. The selection of Williams at number two ties him with former UA point guard Mike Bibby as the highest selected Wildcat in the history of the NBA Draft.

Williams joins a squad littered with young talent and plenty of potential. He will join 20 / 15 big man Kevin Love, up-and-coming forward Michael Beasley, international superstar Ricky Rubio and a plethora of youthful players looking to take the next step towards the NBA Playoffs.

There are potential issues for Williams in Minnesota though. For one, what position is he going to play?

Kevin Love already is locked in at the power forward spot – the position most scouts project Williams to play in the NBA and Beasley averaged close to 20 points per contest as a small forward in what was, far and away, his best season as a pro in his short career.

Assuming the Timberwolves hold on to Williams, you have to figure that they will find a way to get Williams on the court. Perhaps sliding Love over to center and going small or utilizing one of the key contributors off the bench as a sixth man.

Williams enters a scenario with lots of promise, but also an equal level of concern. As of now, Minnesota lacks a head coach and there is nothing more than speculation in terms of who the next head coach will be.

The T'Wolves should be able to find someone willing to assume the responsibilities given how much up-and-coming talent the roster currently possesses, but for now, the franchise is in wait-and-see mode.

Williams is arguably the most NBA-ready player in the draft and that should force him into playing time right away regardless of the situation. He will be able to pick up the slack for Love in the paint when he goes to the bench, but he can also contribute from the outside with his ability to knock down three-point field goals with relative consistency.

Where he will need to work is on the defensive end of the floor. The Timberwolves gave up the most points in the NBA this past season and are going to need Williams to come in and develop that portion of his game as quickly as possible. Minnesota already has plenty of concern on defense and Williams must show he is willing to take that facet of his game to a whole new level over the course of the season.

Overall, Minnesota is a solid situation for Williams as long as he forces his way on the floor with his talent. There is very little question about his ability to play basketball, but he must earn the playing time to prove himself. Assuming he does so, Williams could be one of Minnesota's cornerstones for many years.


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