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NBA Coach Blasts The Timberwolves For Trading Andrew Wiggins And A First-Round Pick For D'Angelo Russell: "That Is Highway Robbery..."

NBA Coach Blasts The Timberwolves For Trading Andrew Wiggins And A First-Round Pick For D'Angelo Russell: "That Is Highway Robbery..."

The Golden State Warriors are NBA champions once again, and while they have the likes of Stephen Curry to thank for that, their front office also deserves a lot of credit for putting together that team. We all know what a fine job they did in drafting Curry, Klay Thompson, Draymond Green, and most recently, Jordan Poole, but they have made some smart moves on the trade front as well.

One such major move was acquiring Andrew Wiggins from the Timberwolves in 2020, and it proved to be an inspired decision. Wiggins was clearly the second-best player for the Warriors in the NBA Finals against the Celtics and has blossomed into one of the better two-way wings in the league. 


NBA Coach Blasts The Timberwolves For Trading Andrew Wiggins And A First-Round Pick For D'Angelo Russell

While Golden State benefitted big time from the acquisition of Wiggins in itself, they also lucked out, as the top-3 protected first-round pick they got with him for the 2021 NBA Draft ended up being the 7th pick. That meant they also managed to draft the highly talented youngster Jonathan Kuminga, all for the price of D'Angelo Russell and a couple of role players. An anonymous NBA coach blasted the Wolves for making a trade like that, as he called it highway robbery.

An anonymous NBA coach blasts the Timberwolves

“[GS] got Wiggins, they got the pick they used for [Jonathan] Kuminga, and they got that for D’Angelo Russell. That is highway robbery…What kind of franchise trades that

pick plus Wiggins for D’Angelo Russell?”
(Via @SeanDeveney)

In hindsight, it was a terrible move, but it didn't seem this bad at the time. Wiggins was seen as somewhat of a disappointment in Minnesota for someone who was the first overall pick in 2014, while Russell was coming off his first All-Star selection in 2019. D'Angelo was also averaging a career-high 23.6 points per game in 2019-20, which can somewhat justify the exchange, but their biggest mistake was definitely giving up that 2021 first-round pick.

They probably expected a team with Karl-Anthony Towns and Russell to have some success, but even with the arrival of Anthony Edwards in 2020, they only managed to win 23 games which suddenly made that pick very valuable. You need some luck to have success in the NBA, and the Warriors certainly were a bit fortunate there. They are now in a position where their roster has too much talent, which in turn means they can't keep all of them. An NBA writer suggested they should keep Wiggins over someone like Poole as two-way wings like the former are hard to find. It is an interesting turn of events for Wiggins, who looks set to be paid big time, with the only question being whether it will be the Warriors who give him all that money.