UPDATE - TRADE REPORTEDLY COMPLETED
The Minnesota Timberwolves made a massive four-team deal that blew up their roster on Tuesday night, but that doesn't mean they're done dealing before Thursday's 2 p.m. NBA trade deadline. The Mercury News' Wes Goldberg reported on Wednesday that the Timberwolves are still in talks with the Golden State Warriors to acquire D'Angelo Russell, but are also competing with the New York Knicks.
In the report, Goldberg says the Warriors are still interested in trading Russell, but the price is still high and the team covets an unprotected first-rounder in the 2021 NBA Draft. This also comes one day after The Athletic's Shams Charania said the Warriors were moving on from discussions revolving around Russell.
The Wolves aren't so sure about that price as The Ringer's Kevin O'Connor reports that they've offered Golden State two first-round picks in this June's draft, including their protected 2020 first-rounder and the Brooklyn Nets' first-rounder which the Wolves received from the Atlanta Hawks in the mega-deal Tuesday night.
The situation was described as a "staring contest" by The Athletic's Jon Krawczynski during a Wednesday interview on KFAN. Krawczynski says Minnesota is waiting for the Warriors' asking price to drop.
"They believe that price is going to drop eventually. Whether it's tomorrow or this summer," he said.
The 2020 draft class is considered to be a weak one, which leads back to the report that the Warriors are more interested in getting Minnesota's 2021 pick.
This stalemate could cause the Wolves to sit on their offer until this offseason, but possibly applying pressure to make a deal now could be the New York Knicks, who are reportedly interested in Russell.
The Knicks hold Dallas' unprotected 2021 first-rounder from the Kristaps Porzingis trade, along with several players on expiring contracts.
Krawczynski said on KFAN that the Wolves don't think there is a strong market outside of themselves for Russell, which is supported by what Sam Amick wrote in a live blog for The Athletic:
"A source confirmed reports of New York’s pursuit of Russell, but indicated that the proposals – as of Wednesday afternoon – weren’t even remotely appealing to the Warriors."
The Mercury News is on record saying Minnesota simply upping the offer to Andrew Wiggins, Minnesota's unprotected 2021 pick and the lottery-protected 2020 pick from Brooklyn, "could be enough to get talks started again with Golden State."
Giving up a 2021 unprotected pick could be extremely valuable, especially if the Wolves are bad again next season. The 2021 draft class is considered much stronger, meaning a trade for Russell could mean giving up Wiggins, a player in the 2020 draft via the Brooklyn pick and perhaps a very good player in the 2021 draft.
Will the price drop by Thursday's 2 p.m. Central trade deadline? We'll all know soon enough.