Minnesota Timberwolves Roundup: Trade chatter, Vanterpool, Gupta

Trade chatter surrounding the Minnesota Timberwolves continues. Plus, interest in David Vanterpool and Sachin Gupta.

With the Minnesota Timberwolves holding the No. 1 pick, there are no shortage of suitors — at least from around the blogosphere.

The Star Tribune’s Chris Hine jumped into the fracas with some thoughts in a recent mailbag. Another local writer, The Athletic’s Jon Krawczynski, spoke with Wolves executive vice president of basketball operations Sachin Gupta about the processes the front office was currently going through.

Elsewhere, there’s interest from around the league in both Gupta and associate head coach David Vanterpool.

Minnesota Timberwolves Roundup: Trade chatter, Vanterpool, Gupta

First, on Hine’s mailbag column.

He took a question that listed several potential trade targets, ranging from Ben Simmons and Pascal Siakam to Caris LeVert, Bradley Beal, and John Wall.

Hine’s response was that the most realistic targets in his mind are Orlando’s Aaron Gordon, Indiana’s Victor Oladipo, and Brooklyn’s Caris LeVert — all three subpar targets in the mind of yours truly.

While Gordon would fit from a positional perspective and has a somewhat reasonable contract, he doesn’t quite add the true positional versatility that the Wolves front office and coaching staff seem to desire. Additionally, he’s far from a knockdown shooter from the outside, although he does check the playmaking and defense boxes, at least on some level.

Oladipo is theoretically a perfect fit in terms of his position, defensive ability, and versatile offensive game. But the jury’s out on whether he can be as impactful in a second or third-banana role, as he would be in Minnesota, and he biggest issue is related to his recent injury history and his contract, which expires after next season.

LeVert is perhaps the most attractive of the trio because of his upside and comparatively reasonable contract, but he’s not yet at the level of many of the other trade targets in terms of being a true star. He’ll be 26 years old next season and still coming out of a significant injury that cost him the back half of the 2018-19 season and the start of 2019-20.

The offense improved dramatically over the past couple of seasons, but his defense hasn’t been entirely consistent and there are questions about his offensive efficiency.

At any rate, there are no shortage of trade targets, and this isn’t the last time we’ll have the opportunity to debate the virtues of various options.

Elsewhere, Krawczynski interviewed Gupta for a piece at The Athletic (subscription required). It mostly covers the process that the Wolves front office is in the midst of, fielding trade offers but also being proactive in trying to see what’s out there. Perhaps it isn’t surprising, but it’s great to hear just how creative the organization is attempting to be.

In related news, the Sacramento Kings want to interview Gupta to run their basketball operations department (subscription required). Plus, we can add the Indiana Pacers to the list of teams that wants to interview Vanterpool for their head coaching vacancy.

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