At 10-11, the Minnesota Timberwolves are better than they have been in a long time. In fact, this is the team's best start since Kevin Garnett last graced the Wolves with his presence. With the emergence of the Ricky Rubio/Kevin Love combo, the Timberwolves have become one of the most exciting young teams in basketball.
That being said, at this point the Timberwolves don't have the personnel necessary to make the playoffs. They have a good group of young players, but they are still a piece of two away from being a perennial contender in the West, depending on the improvement of the players they currently have around their two young stars.
The Wolves wouldn't be willing to part with enough talent to acquire a star, and even if they did, Minnesota isn't necessarily the primary destination for a rising star. However, another high quality starter could push them over the hump, and vault them right into the thick of the playoff picture.
The Wolves have the point guard and the power forward, but the other three positions are still up for grabs. In my opinion, if they can find an adequate center to team with Kevin Love, they can really dominate the interior. They can pick up other pieces through the draft or through free agency, and ultimately put together a team capable of contending in the West.
A trade for the Suns' Marcin Gortat could benefit both teams. First, it's important to realize that the Suns roster is an absolute mess.
Their roster is composed of two players who are severely past their prime (Steve Nash, Grant Hill), two glorified role players (Jared Dudley, Shannon Brown), three overpaid bench players (Channing Frye, Hakim Warrick, Josh Childress), two young players with limited upside (Markieff Morris, Robin Lopez) and then there is Gortat. There is no word other than "disaster" to describe the quality of this roster. Gortat is the only player of any value.
There isn't a player on that team that is a surefire stater four years from now. Considering that the Suns are in the cellar of the Western Conference, it's time to make a change.
Gortat is 27 years old, and he isn't getting any younger. The Suns aren't competitive anymore, and it's hard to imagine they will be at any point during Gortat's prime. It's time for the Suns to start rebuilding, and it starts by trading the players that still have value (Gortat, Nash), and bottoming out. Getting rid of a bad contract or two wouldn't hurt either.
The Suns are going downhill quickly, between their age and their bad contracts, it's only a matter of time before they implode. The Timberwolves on the other hand, are a young team in need of one more piece with plenty of cap space. A perfect match.
If the Suns could get rid of one of their bad contracts with Gortat, and get Michael Beasley and Anthony Randolph in return; that would be something I think they would have to consider. It would help both teams on two very different paths. It would help the Suns begin their rebuilding process, and help the Wolves continue their rapid rise into the playoff picture in the West.
The Wolves have an unbelievable amount of depth on their roster, and oftentimes that's a good thing, but in this case, trading quantity for quality is probably the best course of action for the Wolves. With a high quality center in place, who knows where the Wolves will end up over the next few years? Needless to say, they'll be much better off.
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