Minnesota Timberwolves: Ranking Wolves players by trade value

Malik Beasley of the Minnesota Timberwolves. (Photo by Matthew Stockman/Getty Images)
Malik Beasley of the Minnesota Timberwolves. (Photo by Matthew Stockman/Getty Images) /
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Minnesota Timberwolves, Naz Reid
Naz Reid of the Minnesota Timberwolves. (Photo by Will Newton/Getty Images) /

Minnesota Timberwolves players on bargain deals who won’t be moved

Naz Reid was a top-flight high school recruit just three years ago. He went undrafted after a lone season at LSU, and the Wolves snapped him up to play at Las Vegas Summer League, planning to sign him to a two-way contract.

But Reid impressed so much at summer training camp and in Vegas that the Wolves signed him to a partially-guaranteed, multi-year deal, shifting gears quickly to ensure that they locked in the talented but raw big man.

Reid didn’t do much as a rookie but showed flashes while Karl-Anthony Towns was out due to injury. He started the 2020-21 season as Towns’ primary backup, but again saw time as a starter with Towns out with injury/illness.

After Towns returned and Finch became head coach, Reid suddenly saw himself playing semi-regular minutes alongside Towns at the 4 instead of only as a backup center. That opened up matchups that Reid could more easily win on both ends of the floor, as well as lessened the rebounding burden on a young big who is somewhat undersized to play heavy minutes at the 5 on some nights.

Reid continued to improve as the season went on, and it’s likely that Finch will want to use him more frequently as a 4 in large lineups. His $1.78 million this season and team option for $1.93 million in 2022-23 is an absolute steal, and there’s no reason for the Wolves to move on from him as a strong depth piece with upside.

Jaylen Nowell is in a similar boat. While the opportunities haven’t been as frequent for Nowell, his stretch from late January of this year into March was encouraging and hints at a future as an effective, high-usage bench scorer.

Nowell’s shooting splits improved dramatically over his 15-game cameo as a rookie, and he showed the ability to score at all three levels. Consistency was a bit of an issue and he simply wasn’t himself after returning from a bone bruise in his leg.

Nowell is only making $1.78 million in 2021-22 and has a team option for $1.93 million in 2022-23, so there is no reason for the Wolves to be in a hurry to trade him.