NBA Rumors: Zion Williamson Could Form Pelicans' 'Big Three' With Karl-Anthony Towns & D'Angelo Russell

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JB Baruelo

Since the 2021 NBA offseason, rumors have been swirling around All-Star power forward Zion Williamson and his future with the New Orleans Pelicans. After failing to reach the playoffs for the third consecutive year, Shams Charania, Joe Vardon, and William Guillory of The Athletic revealed in mid-June Williamson's camp was growing unhappy with the Pelicans.

However, as of now, there's no indication that Williamson and the Pelicans would be parting ways soon. Instead of listening to offers for him, the Pelicans are finding ways to surround Williamson with talents that could help them become a more competitive team in the 2021-22 NBA season.

Proposed Blockbuster Trade Benefits Pelicans' Zion Williamson

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In a recent article, Greg Patuto of NBA Analysis Network came up with a hypothetical blockbuster trade idea that would enable the Pelicans to pair Williamson with Minnesota Timberwolves superstars Karl-Anthony Towns and D'Angelo Russell. In the proposed trade scenario, the Pelicans would be sending a package that includes Brandon Ingram, Jonas Valanciunas, Josh Hart, Garrett Temple, a 2022 first-round pick, a 2023 first-round pick, a 2024 first-round pick, and a 2025 first-round pick to the Timberwolves in exchange for Towns, Russell, and Jaylen Nowell.

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Karl-Anthony Towns Forms Formidable Frontcourt Duo With Zion Williamson

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Valanciunas may be performing well in his first year in New Orleans, but swapping him with Towns should be a no-brainer. Karl-Anthony Towns would be a massive upgrade over Valanciunas at the starting center position. Aside from being a dominant force under the basket, the former No. 1 pick is also capable of knocking down shots from beyond the arc.

This season, the 26-year-old center is averaging 23.2 points, 9.5 rebounds, 3.5 assists, 1.1 blocks, and 1.4 steals while shooting 50.6 percent from the field and 46.0 percent from beyond the arc, per ESPN.

D'Angelo Russell Boosts Pelicans' Backcourt

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Towns isn't the only young All-Star who would be joining forces with Williamson in New Orleans, but also his close pal D'Angelo Russell. The successful acquisition of Russell from the Timberwolves would boost the Pelicans' backcourt. He would give them a very reliable scoring option, a great playmaker, and a decent floor-spacer.

This season, the 25-year-old point guard is averaging 18.1 points, 3.5 rebounds, 5.5 assists, and 1.0 steal while shooting 37.9 percent from the field and 33.0 percent from beyond the arc, per ESPN. If Russell, Williamson, and Towns find the perfect chemistry, the Pelicans could form their own "Big Three" in the 2021-22 NBA season.

Does The Trade Make Sense For The Timberwolves?

The proposed blockbuster deal with the Pelicans would be worth exploring for the Timberwolves, especially if Towns demands a trade and they want to undergo another rebuild. By sending him and Russell to New Orleans, the Timberwolves would be acquiring a new franchise cornerstone in Ingram, a young sharpshooter in Hart, two solid veteran role players in Valanciunas and Temple, and multiple future draft assets.

Valanciunas would serve as an immediate replacement for Towns at the starting center position, while Ingram would be Anthony Edwards new superstar running mate in Minnesota.

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