D'Angelo Russell could have signed with the Minnesota Timberwolves last summer. But he chose to sign with the Warriors instead (he technically signed with the Brooklyn Nets and then was traded to Golden State).
As you are aware, D-Lo ended up in Minnesota after all when the Dubs shipped him to the T-Wolves in exchange for Andrew Wiggins before the NBA trade deadline in early February.
So why didn't he join the T-Wolves initially?
“I remember going through the process and I was like, ‘If I go to Minnesota, I play with Karl- (Anthony Towns) and all the guys who will be there," he told Jon Krawczynski of The Athletic. "I could potentially settle down and relax and unpack my bags.
"But there’s something telling me you gotta go get every bit of money you’re worth right now.”
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The Warriors gave Russell the maximum amount allowed -- a little more than $117.3 million over four years.
Minnesota might have been able to get to the max, but it would have been very hard. As Krawczynski wrote back in July:
The Wolves had to do some salary-cap gymnastics and likely engineer a trade or two to create the space to absorb Russell and a four-year, $117 million contract — either through sign-and-trade that would require nearly $22 million in cuts or with cap space, a much more daunting task that required $33 million in fat-trimming from the current roster.
So you can't blame D-Lo whatsoever for securing the biggest payout possible, especially when he knew there was a chance he would be traded to the T-Wolves down the line.
Plus, he really did want to team up with Steph Curry, Draymond Green and Klay Thompson, absorb knowledge from coach Steve Kerr and possibly make a deep playoff run.
“My whole thing was I’m gonna just learn from these guys,” Russell said. “Even if I don’t get to play with them (very long), I’m going to pick their brain as much as I can.”