The Timberwolves have a chance
The bright side of the Rudy Gobert trade
BY DAVID THORPE
Malik Beasley, Patrick Beverley, Leandro Bolmaro, Walker Kessler, Jarred Vanderbilt, a 2023 first-round pick, a 2025 first-round pick, a 2026 pick swap, a 2027 first-round pick, and a protected 2029 first-round pick is a LOT to give up for Rudy Gobert—who, depending who you ask, may or may not be the portrait of a kind of big man the league has left behind. In almost every analysis, on almost every podcast and TV show, in almost every article: too much. Maybe way too much.
I won’t argue that. Especially not at TrueHoop, where we have just launched Bonus Wins, a sophisticated statistic that points out the incredible value of good players on rookie deals (and delivers a harsh message about, well, contracts like Gobert’s). The Timberwolves didn’t just give the Jazz players; they also gave them picks that will come with players—some of whom will be among the league’s best values. That absence will be felt for more than a decade, and the Wolves will likely be abysmal in 2030 because of it.
In a metaphor, the Wolves just shelled $300,000 for a Lamborghini, and all anyone can talk about is how expensive it was. But before too long, Wolves head coach Chris Finch will add another observation: Lamborghinis are pretty damned nice to drive.