Can the Minnesota Timberwolves acquire one of the greatest draft prospects in recent memory in this year’s NBA Draft? It will take some maneuvering of the roster and draft picks.
Before I begin this piece on trading what the Timberwolves can for Luka Doncic, you may want to scroll to the bottom and watch his draft profile video, we’re dealing with one of the more underrated draft prospects of all-time.
The Sacramento Kings (no. 2) and Dallas Mavericks (no. 5) have inquired about moving down in the draft, mainly because they want a player with ‘superstar’ talent. If the Timberwolves want a chance at Luka Doncic, Deandre Ayton, or even Mo Bamba, they’ll have to give up Jimmy Butler or a lot of picks with Andrew Wiggins to do so.
With rumors spreading of two teams in the top-five they want some assets for their picks, trade rumors will follow.
The offseason hot stove is already burning up just three days after the Warriors’ win. The Kings and Mavericks are open to moving down in the draft, according to multiple league front-office executives. Sacramento is in the asset-stacking business, while Dallas is trying to compete for the playoffs next season.
Realistically, Luka Doncic wouldn’t fall to the no. 5 pick, as most mock drafts have Doncic going as low as the no. 4 pick – so we’ll stay with the Sacramento Kings pick.
With the DeMarcus Cousins trade, we can assume that the Kings want young assets with the potential of stardom. The Timberwolves may have just the guy to fulfill those needs.
SG, Iman Shumpert
PG, Tyus Jones
Timberwolves 2018 No. 20 Pick
Timberwolves 2019 Unprotected First Round Pick
As for the trade, the Timberwolves would have to give up a good amount of assets for talent such as Doncic’s – while hoping he doesn’t go to the Phoenix Suns with the no. 1 pick.
The Kings have been known to make huge moves to create more a more young and versatile lineup. Acquiring a stud like Andrew Wiggins who is barely 23 years of age, would be down their alley of the type of talent they want to surround their already young roster.
Tyus Jones could help off the bench at the point guard position as De’Aaron Fox tries to take the reigns of the Kings guard position. And to top it off, the Kings would be getting two young players over the next two summer to build more assets on an already asset-full team.
The Timberwolves on the other hand would be losing the potential star in Andrew Wiggins and the grit of Tyus Jones.
In return, they would be getting a international superstar in Luka Doncic, who is a 19-year-old that is coveted all over the world as the next great NBA star – with possible hall of fame talent. Iman Shumpert would have to be thrown into the trade for contractual reasons over the 2018-19 season, but he would help provide guard depth with Crawford opting out of his contract.
You may hear that Doncic is a ‘great player’ a lot, like A LOT. But, you probably haven’t seen a realistic look at what he can actually do in the NBA, here you go.
Height: 6’8″, Weight: 220, Age: 19
Statistics: 14.5 PPG, 5.2 RPG, 4.5 APG
The statistics in the beginning of this video of Doncic’s per 40 minutes stats may be flawed because many players don’t play close to 40 minutes per game in the NBA. The Timberwolves had most of their starting lineup averaging 38 minutes per game, so take the stats to the bank.
Luka Doncic may be a huge gamble for the Timberwolves who don’t even have Jimmy Butler locked up after next Summer yet, but you don’t have much of a reason to get guys to want to sign in Minnesota without some kind of promised future of young talent.
With many believing that Karl-Anthony Towns is one of the best players in the league at such a young age, could the name of Luka Doncic be another huge pull of free agents to Minnesota that we’ve seen since Kevin Garnett?
With a lineup that consists of Luka Doncic, Jimmy Butler, Karl-Anthony Towns, and the millions saved from releasing the Andrew Wiggins contract, you can imagine more assets that would want to play in Minnesota next summer.
Only time will tell, the Timberwolves clock is ticking.