This particular trade isn’t a cost-saving measure for the future and really is only a roster-balance and housekeeping move for this season, but makes a lot of sense for both teams.
The Timberwolves signed Anthony Tolliver over the summer to contribute off the bench as the primary stretch-four, but the acquisition hasn’t quite worked out the way the Timberwolves wanted. Tolliver has only played 15.1 minutes per game — his lowest average since his rookie year — and has occasionally fallen out of the rotation entirely. Tolliver would be a better fit on a contending team, and the Clippers are in a better position to make the postseason than the Wolves.
The Clippers would benefit by adding another big who can shoot and will give their young corp of guards more minutes. And especially in the wake of the Tobias Harris trade early Wednesday morning, L.A. could use some additional help in the stretch-four role.
The Timberwolves are desperate for point guard help, and adding Patrick Beverley would be a huge help for the rest of the season. Beverley is known for his tough defense and is a solid playmaker, and trading a player at a position that is suddenly deep (power forward) and adding at a thin spot (point guard/perimeter defense) would be a fantastic move.
Beverley’s toughness could rub off on the Wolves, and hopefully that would include Andrew Wiggins.
Neither Beverley or Tolliver is likely to fit into their current team’s plans next year, so why not complete a roster-balancing trade that could help both franchises make a run at the playoffs?