Grade the trade: Pelicans land surprise All-Star center in bold proposal

The Pelicans must upgrade their roster this offseason, and it will take bold moves like this.
New Orleans Pelicans, Brandon Ingram
New Orleans Pelicans, Brandon Ingram / Kyle Ross-USA TODAY Sports
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Should the Pelicans trade for Karl-Anthony Towns?

New Orleans would love to add another star, but the focus should remain on fit. KAT does not push them any closer to title contention than Brandon Ingram. The four-time All-Star is an elite scorer, shooter, and rebounder, but his defense and consistency cannot be ignored.

The Pelicans need a rim protector next to Zion Williamson. They tried to upgrade over Jonas Valanciunas last summer, but could not find the right move. Towns would give them the floor spacing boost. Minnesota traded for Rudy Gobert to move KAT to the four because he struggled mightily as their defensive anchor. Fans should have no reason to think that would change in the Big Easy.

Towns has struggled when the games matter most. Whether it is committing head-scratching fouls or not offering star production, the Timberwolves are often left wanting more from the seven-footer in the playoffs. They reached the conference finals in 2024 with KAT playing better, so it may be the start of the turnaround for the 28-year-old.

Grade: C+

The Pelicans upgrade from Brandon Ingram to Karl-Anthony Towns, but what does that accomplish? New Orleans is no closer to title contention and fit questions between their two stars remain. The Pelicans solve their floor spacing issues, but add rim protection and inconsistency to their list. This move earns a C-plus because it does not accomplish anything in New Orleans.

The New Orleans Pelicans would love to trade Brandon Ingram for a star this summer, but can they find the right move? Stay tuned to find out.