Minnesota Timberwolves add point guard of the present and future
In this hypothetical trade, the Minnesota Timberwolves receive Dejounte Murray and the less favorable of two first-round pick swaps for Mike Conly, Kyle Anderson, and two second-rounders.
The Timberwolves solidify the starting point guard spot for years to come with the addition of Murray. Before the 2023-24 season began, the Atlanta Hawks secured Murray's services for an extra four seasons at a $120 million price tag.
The Atlanta guard is locked in through 2028, but he does have a player option in the final season. Murray has shown continuous improvement in his career. He began his career as a poor shooter. However, he's since evolved into a superb 3-point shooter. Murray is knocking down a career-high 2.4 threes per game at a 39.7 percent clip.
In San Antonio, Murray displayed a unique ability to haul in rebounds for a 6-foot-5 guard. At his peak, he averaged 8.3 rebounds per game. The former Spur also developed into one of the best passers in the league. As a lead guard, Murray averaged 9.2 assists per game in his final season in San Antonio. And despite the heavy playmaking burden, he never averaged more than 2.6 turnovers per game.
Although the Hawks are mortgaging a future asset, the pairing of Murray and Trae Young doesn't seem to be working. The duo have a negative plus/minus together this season. Whenever the guards share the floor, Atlanta is minus-51. Also, the Hawks' already poor defensive rating drops by two points when both guards are on the floor.
By dealing Murray, the Hawks would begin a pseudo-rebuild. Atlanta would still have the franchise centerpiece, Young, in place. And alongside Young, Bogdan Bogdanovic, Jalen Johnson, Onyeka Okongwu, De'Andre Hunter, and Clint Capela remain on the roster.
This trade clears $30 million worth of cap space and adds multiple draft assets in the process. Atlanta could then decide on trading Capela or other veterans such as Bogdanovic and Hunter to make a run at 2024 free agents.
Next, we'll analyze the trade for both parties keeping in mind Minnesota's current contending status and Atlanta's poor start to the season.