The Wolves have been terrible, but Zach LaVine has been on fire

Remember when Zach LaVine was nearly traded before the season?

It's hard to imagine the Minnesota Timberwolves without Zach LaVine right now.

The 21-year-old has been one of the few bright spots during a disappointing start to the 2016-17 season for the Wolves. While the team has been struggling, the athletic combo guard is having a breakout season.

Best known for his rim-rocking dunks, LaVine is averaging 20.4 points, 3 rebounds and 3 assists per game.

Additionally, he's shooting the ball better – making nearly 47 percent of his field goal attempts and connecting on nearly 38 percent of his 3-pointers.

While a little better than a third of LaVine's shots are coming right around the rim, he's actually taken more threes this year – 159 of them to be exact.

What if they'd traded him?

So it's really hard to imagine the Wolves without him – but during the offseason trade rumors were flying.

Prior to the NBA Draft, LaVine was the subject of a trade that would have sent him to Chicago (where the Wolves will play Tuesday night) for Jimmy Butler – reuniting him with former coach Tom Thibodeau.

At one point, as LaVine admits in an interview with the Pioneer Press, he didn't know what his future held and even called his teammate Andrew Wiggins saying that he didn't know if he'd be back.

"You talk to your agents, you talk to your family and you really just don't know until you really talk to the staff and the team," LaVine tells the newspaper. "You have no idea. It's different. First time going through it, it's a little different. I feel like it happens. It's the NBA."

The rumored trade never materialized – and if playing time is any indication, Minnesota must be happy with the production they're getting from LaVine now.

Entering last night's game against Golden State, LaVine was third in the NBA averaging better than 37 minutes a game.

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