D'Angelo Russell Trade Rumors: T-Wolves 'Intensifying' Pursuit of Warriors Star

Adam Wells@adamwells1985Featured ColumnistJanuary 16, 2020

Golden State Warriors guard D'Angelo Russell (0) dribbles upcourt against the Dallas Mavericks during the second half of an NBA basketball game in San Francisco, Saturday, Dec. 28, 2019. (AP Photo/Jeff Chiu)
Jeff Chiu/Associated Press

The Minnesota Timberwolves could be at the center of the NBA leading up to the trade deadline Feb. 6.

Per The Athletic's Jon Krawczynski and Shams Charania, the T-Wolves are expected to "intensify their pursuit of Golden State Warriors guard D'Angelo Russell."

Earlier Thursday, Minnesota acquired Allen Crabbe from the Atlanta Hawks in exchange for Jeff Teague and Treveon Graham.

Krawczynski and Charania noted the Warriors are inclined to keep Russell, at least right now. They could wait until this summer to make a move when they aren't against the hard cap, which would allow them to "package him in a deal for a player who won't be buried on the bench behind the two greatest shooters in league history" in Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson.

Minnesota and Russell reportedly had a mutual attraction over the summer. Marc Stein of the New York Times reported Russell had the Timberwolves atop his free-agent wish list, and the team felt confident it could clear enough cap space to sign him.

When Kevin Durant decided to join the Brooklyn Nets, the Warriors worked out a sign-and-trade with Brooklyn that allowed them to give Russell a four-year, $117 million max contract.

Adding Russell would help address the Timberwolves' need for more outside shooting. They rank 29th in the NBA with a 32.4 three-point percentage despite attempting the third-most threes per game (39.0).

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Russell's 23.3 points per game this season is the highest rate of his career. The 23-year-old is also shooting 36.1 percent from three-point range and averages 6.0 assists per contest.