Wiggins for Irving is more complicated than it looks - Bring Me The News

Wiggins for Irving is more complicated than it looks

Irving is the more polished player, but the Wolves have to think long-term on this one.

If the Wolves don't offer the Cavaliers Andrew Wiggins, they won't get Kyrie Irving. "It's that simple," the Associated Press' Jon Krawczynski told KFAN Monday. 

Which leads to this question: 

Would Minnesota rather sign Wiggins to a five-year extension now, locking him up through the 2022-23 season? Or move Wiggins for Irving and risk losing Irving after two years when he's due to hit the open market in the summer of 2019?

Wolves owner Glen Taylor confirmed last week that they're in the early stages of negotiating a five-year max extension with Wiggins, and that they want to keep him.

Things to consider

  1. Is Wiggins for five years more valuable than Irving for two years?
  2. Are the Wolves confident they'd be able to re-sign Irving in 2019?
  3. Does a lineup featuring Irving, Jeff Teague and Jimmy Butler create a defensive issue too big to overcome?
  4. Will Butler's presence help turn Wiggins into the defensive stopper so many believe he's capable of becoming?
  5. Do the Wolves think Wiggins will blossom now that he'll be able to play shooting guard instead of being outmuscled at small forward?
  6. What does franchise cornerstone Karl-Anthony Towns think? What does Butler prefer?

Wiggins doesn't turn 27 years old – which is the prime age for NBA players – until 2022. 

David Aldridge weighs in

Every now and again I send NBA.com's David Aldridge an email with the hopes of him answering my Timberwolves question in his weekly Monday Morning Tip

It finally happened this week when I asked him how cruel it would be for the Wolves to trade Teague when they're contractually allowed to beginning Dec. 15. Think about it: Minnesota could trade Wiggins for Irving now, test the lineup of Teague-Irving-Butler and then trade Teague in December if the lineup proves to be a defensive issue. 

Basically, Aldridge suggests that Wiggins for Irving makes sense because it would give the Wolves a better chance to keep a core of Irving, Butler and Towns for the long-term. 

In Aldridge's mind, the second scenario below makes more sense from a financial standpoint. 

Scenario No. 1: 

  1. Sign Wiggins to a max deal now.
  2. Sign Irving and/or Butler to an extension(s) in the summer of 2019. 
  3. Sign Towns to a designated rookie max deal in the summer of 2019. 

Scenario No. 2: 

  1. Trade Wiggins for Irving now. 
  2. Sign Irving and Butler to extensions in the summer of 2019. 
  3. Sign Towns to a designated rookie max deal in the summer of 2019. 

The decisions will get a lot easier for president/coach Tom Thibodeau and general manager Scott Layden if the Suns or Celtics swoop in and trade for Irving. 

Krawczynski is on record saying the Suns could offer a package of Eric Bledsoe, Josh Jackson and draft picks for Irving, while the Celtics might consider sending Isaiah Thomas, Jae Crowder and a pick to Cleveland. 

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