SAN FRANCISCO (CBS SF) — With the trade deadline ticking down Thursday, the Golden State Warriors sent star point guard D’Angelo Russell, reserves Jacob Evans and Omari Spellman to the Minnesota Timberwolves for veteran Andrew Wiggins and draft picks.
Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN reported the blockbuster deal as Warriors General Manager Bob Myers firmly cast his eyes toward rebuilding Golden State into a major contender next season and beyond.
Last night, the slumping Philadelphia 76ers acquired Glenn Robinson and Alec Burks from the Warriors for three draft picks in the hopes of adding offensive punch to their bench.
In the deals with the 76ers and Minnesota, Myers picked up a 2021 first-round pick, a 2020 second round pick, a 2021 second round pick and two 2022 second-round picks.
Currently, Golden State — which has been ravaged this season by injuries to Steph Curry, Klay Thompson and Kevon Looney — have an NBA worst 12-40 record and if their downward spiral continues would have the best shot at getting the No. 1 draft pick in the NBA Draft Lottery.
The Warriors and Minnesota have been talking about a trade for Russell, who is a close friend of Timberwolves disgruntled star center of Karl-Anthony Towns, for several days. But Minnesota wasn’t willing to give up what Golden State wanted.
With the trading deadline clock ticking down, a deal was struck for the draft picks and Wiggins, who was the league’s top pick in 2014 and went on to NBA Rookie Of The Year honors with Cleveland Cavaliers. He currently has three years left on a deal that pays him $29.5 million in 2021, $31.6 million the following year and $33.6 million in its final year.
The 24-year-old appeared in 42 games as a starter for Minnesota this season, averaging 22.4 points and career highs of 5.2 rebounds and 3.7 assists in 34.6 minutes per game. Currently in his sixth NBA season, Wiggins owns career averages of 19.7 points, 4.3 rebounds and 2.3 assists in 35.8 minutes over 442 games.
With Curry and Thompson on the sidelines, Russell had emerged was Golden State leading offensive threat. In 33 games, he has averaged a career-best 23.6 points a game and also picking up 6.2 assists and 3.7 rebounds a contest.
Meanwhile, both Robinson and Burks were held out of Wednesday night’s 129-88 blow out loss to the Brooklyn Nets.
In return for two of the team’s key offensive contributors this season the Warriors received receive three second-round picks Philadelphia had acquired in other deals — Dallas’ 2020 pick, Denver’s 2021 and Toronto’s 2022.
In 48 games this season for the Warriors, Burks was averaging 16.1 points, 4.7 rebounds and 3.1 assists a contest. Meanwhile, Robinson was averaging 12.9 points, 4.7 rebounds and 1.8 assists a contest. Both were on one-year deals with Golden State.
Philadelphia has slumped recently and are in sixth place in the standings entering Thursday’s games.
The Sixers hope to strengthen their bench with the move. The move puts the Sixers roster at 15, meaning two players will have to go before the trade deadline to fit in Robinson and Burks.