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Kevin Garnett identifies young frontcourt players with superstar potential

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If there's anyone who knows how to recognize frontcourt talent, it's Kevin Garnett.

After playing 21 NBA seasons, making 15 All-Star teams and winning an MVP award as well as a championship as a member of the Boston Celtics, Garnett scored 26,071 points, pulled down 14,662 rebounds and played 1,462 regular-season games along with 143 playoff contests.

Therefore, his opinion should be respected.

In a recent interview, Garnett explained why he believes that the NBA's focus on perimeter-oriented point guards may be shifting soon.

He credits three young big men as representing the future of the league.

Boston Celtics v Philadelphia 76ers

The first is Philadelphia 76ers center Joel Embiid.

"I had a chance to work with [Embiid] this summer. ... I've been wanting to start a mentorship that I can actually start impacting some of these younger guys and help them not just with basketball things, but off-court things and NBA-league things—life things—that we all have to deal with," Garnett told Bleacher Report's Jonathan Abrams. "I'm not trying to be someone's agent—not trying to be someone's anything—but when I watched him [against the Lakers last week], he looked like he was free. He looked like he was having a lot of fun. I saw him go into different ways of scoring... I can honestly say he's been getting better every game. The sky's the limit for Joel."

Embiid has averaged 22.8 points and 10.9 rebounds in 29.4 minutes per game this season for the Sixers. He also had he most ridiculous stat line of the season so far when he lit up the Los Angeles Lakers for 46 points, 15 rebounds, seven assists and seven blocks in 34 minutes back on November 15.

Minnesota Timberwolves v Dallas Mavericks

The second is Minnesota Timberwolves star Karl-Anthony Towns.

"Embiid—against the Lakers—showed kind of an arsenal of moves I've seen probably only Karl-Anthony Towns have. ... I love where the big is going. I would like to see a lot more post-ups—but the game is beautiful. We had to sit back and watch the point guard position dominate for about five or six years. It's good to see some big stars push through," Garnett said.

Towns has put up 20.8 points and 11.4 rebounds per 34.4 minutes per contest for Minnesota this season and is widely recognized as the potential future face of the league.

Garnett saved his hot take for last and made quite the claim about Milwaukee Bucks big man Thon Maker, who is a very raw talent at the moment.

"Thon Maker reminds me a lot of myself," KG noted. "He loves the game. He's a young, exuberant athlete who has a lot of tools—he has touch; he has agility; he has really, good feet. He has a really good shot from three-point all the way up to 19 to 21 feet. He has very good bones, as we say. Thon is going to be the MVP of the league one day. Mark it down. He has the bones. He has the appetite to be able to chase something like that."

After averaging 4.0 points and 2.0 rebounds in 9.9 minutes per game over 57 contests last year, Maker has not made the most of added minutes this year, posting 4.5 points and 3.3 rebounds in 18.2 minutes per game.

But, his unappealing stats apparently have no bearing on whether or not KG believes he will eventually turn into a superstar or not.

While both Embiid and Towns appear to be headed towards superstardom, Maker is a long way away from reaching that status. But, Garnett obviously sees something in him. It will be fascinating to see if the future Hall of Famer's prediction comes true or not.

Topics:
Joel Embiid
Philadelphia 76ers
Atlantic Division
Eastern Conference
NBA
Milwaukee Bucks
Central Division
Kevin Garnett
Minnesota Timberwolves
Northwest Division
Western Conference
Karl-Anthony Towns

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