Warriors

Warriors

The Minnesota Timberwolves want to acquire Warriors guard D'Angelo Russell before the NBA trade deadline hits at noon PT on Thursday.

Unfortunately for the T-Wolves, "there still remains a gulf to overcome" in the negotiations, ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski tweeted Tuesday morning.

Without knowing exactly what Golden State is demanding in exchange for D-Lo, ESPN's Bobby Marks examined how a deal ultimately could come to fruition.

It would involve multiple teams:

Minnesota Timberwolves get: D'Angelo Russell, Ersan Ilyasova and D.J. Wilson

Golden State Warriors get: Andrew Wiggins, Indiana's lottery-protected 2020 first-round pick, Minnesota's 2020 first-round pick and Minnesota's 2020 second-round pick

Milwaukee Bucks get: Robert Covington

Let's start with the Timberwolves, who acquire their point guard of the future in Russell (under contract through 2022-23). The price is rich, but remember that this draft is looking average, at best, and the Wolves are not going to fill the void at point guard in free agency.

If there is any hesitancy, it would come from the Warriors, who list Russell as a prized trade asset. They simply could wait until next season and evaluate how Russell fits alongside Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson. However, the return value of two first-round picks and a high-value second-rounder is too hard to turn down. Of course, Wiggins is the wild card based on his contract and inconsistency.

Immediate thought -- I doubt the Warriors want to make the Bucks even better, because if Milwaukee wins the title that would hurt Golden State's chances of possibly acquiring Giannis Antetokounmpo down the road, right? But let's move on.

From the Warriors' perspective, this would give them three first-round selections -- with two of those possibly landing in the top-five. But would the Warriors truly want that? As Marks noted: "This draft is looking average."

Perhaps Golden State would be able to flip those picks as the draft approaches.

As for Wiggins, he is owed about $95 million through the 2022-23 season, and a lot of people in the basketball world believe he has been a bust so far. His shot selection (a lot of long 2s) has been an issue.

 

The positive outlook would be that he is just 24 years old and is averaging 22.4 points, 5.2 rebounds and 3.7 assists per game. The Warriors would hope that his percentages this season -- 44.4 percent overall and 33 percent from 3-point range -- would shoot up by playing alongside Steph Curry, Klay Thompson and Draymond Green. He definitely would get more open looks and wouldn't have as much pressure on him to produce.

[RELATED: D-Lo 'ready for war' as NBA trade deadline inches closer]

Additionally, Wiggins -- the No. 1 overall pick from the 2014 NBA Draft -- has the tools to be a terrific defender, and perhaps that potential gets unlocked in a Warriors uniform.

Ultimately, it sounds like it's going to take more than just two 2020 first-round picks for the Warriors to feel comfortable striking a deal with Minnesota.

The clock is ticking ...

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Programming Note: The "2020 NBA Trade Deadline Show" is coming your way this Thursday at 11:30am on the MyTeams app and on NBCSportsBayArea.com! Our NBA Insiders will analyze all of the news and rumors that could impact the Warriors heading into the Noon deadline. Don’t miss it!