First of all, let’s get one thing straight: if the Minnesota Timberwolves draft Cade Cunningham, they don’t have to move D’Angelo Russell. At 6’8, Cunningham profiles as a human Swiss army knife. They can co-exist in the starting lineup, as Cunningham can theoretically play the 2, 3 or 4.
Let’s get another thing equally straight: if the Minnesota Timberwolves draft Cade Cunningham, they should move D’Angelo Russell.
Minnesota Timberwolves: 3 D’Angelo Russell trades if the Timberwolves get Cade Cunningham
However effective Cunningham’s three-pointer looks at the NBA level, the Wolves will not be bringing him into the fold to function primarily as an off-ball threat. While D’Angelo Russell has made strides throughout his career as a catch-and-shoot weapon, he’s not likely going to want to cede significant touches to Cunningham and transform into Minnesota’s JJ Reddick overnight.
That’s not to mention Anthony Edwards, who just wrapped up a spectacular season as (insert drumroll) …a prolific on-ball threat. For all his explosive drives to the basket, he still shot just 32.9% from deep in his debut season. That’s too many cooks in the ball-handling kitchen, and if the Wolves roster Cunningham, it’s not going to be either of the last two number one overall picks who’s asked to go buss the floor spacing tables.
If the lottery gods smile on the Timberwolves again with the number one pick in the 2021 NBA draft, management needs to appease them by enhancing the team’s floor balance.
Here are 3 trades that could help their cause.