3 reasons why Timberwolves won 3-team trade, and why so few get it

Mandatory Credit: Sam Sharpe-USA TODAY Sports
Mandatory Credit: Sam Sharpe-USA TODAY Sports /
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Okay, you’ve had an overnight sleep to let all of the dust settle over the Minnesota Timberwolves’ involvement in a three-team trade that ignited a flurry of other NBA Trades. The LA Lakers boast D’Angelo Russell, Malk Beasley, and Jarred Vanderbilt to go with ex-Timberwolves and current Lakers player Patrick Beverley.

There are quite a few pieces to unpack in this trade. If you want the full details of the trade, you can click this link here:  But in the interest of time, let’s summarize the pieces once more for you here.  So each team in this trade will receive:

Minnesota Timberwolves

PG Mike Conley Jr.
SG Nickell Alexander-Walker
2024 2nd-round pick (lesser of Memphis or Washington picks)
2025 2nd-round pick Utah
2026 2nd-round pick Utah

light. Hot. Timberwolves Trade Rumors: Details reveal tidy return for DLo

Our instant reaction:
The Timberwolves knew that the ever-widening gap between the team’s budget and the salary demands of D’Angelo Russell was not going to fade away, and that posed quite a problem for the team’s front office which faces the difficult challenge of extending both SG Anthony Edwards and SF Jaden McDaniels in the offseason. Losing DLo to free agency would have lost that salary placeholder for the team, and yielded the Timberwolves nothing.

There are two ways to judge this move: checkers or chess. On the checkers’ front, the move is a push. The Timberwolves do not necessarily improve at the position, with the exception of Conley having two seasons on his current contract. But for the chess grandmasters, this was an excellent trade. The Timberwolves added the best point guard to optimize the offense of center Rudy Gobert, the team adds a young wing shooter who can drain treys, and the team grabs three draft picks in the second round of future NBA Drafts which give President Tim Connelly three chances to land a significant player for the Timberwolves in the future.

Our Grade: A-