Minnesota Timberwolves: 3 realistic trades for a power forward

Marvin Bagley of the Sacramento Kings could be a Minnesota Timberwolves trade target. (Photo by Lachlan Cunningham/Getty Images)
Marvin Bagley of the Sacramento Kings could be a Minnesota Timberwolves trade target. (Photo by Lachlan Cunningham/Getty Images) /
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Minnesota Timberwolves, Marvin Bagley III
Marvin Bagley III of the Sacramento Kings. (Photo by Lachlan Cunningham/Getty Images) /

Minnesota Timberwolves trade for Marvin Bagley III

Similar to the Brooklyn trade, this trade involves the Wolves sending out young assets in exchange for a starting-caliber power forward.

Bagley hasn’t necessarily reached his full potential in Sacramento, which could be partially attributed to the makeup of the Kings’ roster. This is Bagley’s first full crack as a full-time starter, starting all four games for the Kings up to this point.

However, Harrison Barnes, Nemanja Bjelica, Jabari Parker, and Richaun Holmes are all competing for minutes at forward, leaving Bagley in a crowded frontcourt. Bagley receives criticism largely due to where he was drafted in 2018, but draft aside, Bagley has shown that he is a true starting-caliber power forward with the ability to play center. He is a career 14-and-7 player and be a great fit for the Wolves.

From Minnesota’s perspective, this trade makes a lot of sense to get some help in the frontcourt. Again, while Culver and Layman have both shown flashes of upside in the past two seasons, they aren’t necessarily crucial to the long term plans of this roster, as both have immediate replacements that can fill similar roles in Hernangomez and Okogie.

The Wolves need a power forward worthy of starter’s minutes, and in order to get one, they are going to have to be willing to part ways with some of their wing depth. This trade will also cost the Wolves one of their first-round picks from this year in Jaden McDaniels and an additional second-round pick, but these are risks worth taking in order to fill out the starting lineup.

As much as the Wolves would like to pile up assets, the absence of a 2021 first-round pick increases the urgency to find a power forward — and particularly one like Bagley that can play the 5 in KAT’s absence.

For Sacramento, this may seem like a small return for the former No. 2 overall pick. However, given where Bagley is at as a player, this trade makes sense for the team.

First, the Kings essentially get a late first-round pick in the form of Jaden McDaniels, who was drafted No. 28 just over a month ago. On top of that, the Kings get a second-round pick, last year’s No. 6 pick in Culver, who is a proven defender capable of matching up at positions 1 through 3, and Jake Layman, a utility wing on a cap-friendly contract.

Given the replacements available for Bagley, it makes sense for the Kings to gather assets to help their young team at other positions. The likelihood of this trade depends on how much the Kings front office currently values Bagley and whether they see that value appreciating or depreciating over the next two years of his rookie deal.

Next. D'Angelo Russell and the Wolves' stagnant offense. dark

Will the Wolves pull the trigger on a trade for a power forward any time soon? Might the injury to Towns accelerate the process, or will it slow it down? Only time will tell.