Ever since the Golden State Warriors signed D'Angelo Russell, the rumor around the league was that they were going to try and trade him later in the season.
The Warriors tried their best to shut down that narrative right away, but their concerns about his fit next to the Splash Brothers became more evident as the year went by.
Obviously, this has nothing to do with Russell or his production, as he's averaging 23.8 points, 3.7 rebounds, and 6.3 assists per game and clearly has one of the brightest futures in the NBA.
However, it's becoming clearer now that the Warriors likely signed him as an insurance policy for their future. They could test the waters during a complicated season, and get a lot in return if things didn't work out.
And with them sliding all the way to the bottom of the Western Conference, it seems like they may try and move on from Russell right now instead of waiting until the summer, when his value may take a slight dip.
It's a secret to no one that the Minnesota Timberwolves have been in love with the idea of pairing Russell with Karl-Anthony Towns for years, and Marc Stein of the New York Times reported the Warriors are finally listening to trade offers for him.
The Timberwolves are reportedly shopping Robert Covington and Andrew Wiggins, but whether the Warriors would be interested in those players is yet to be seen.
According to their report, players like Kevin Knox, Dennis Smith Jr, and Frank Ntilikina could be in the move to try and make a deal work, as the Knicks have vowed to take a leap forward next season.
However, they'll also face some tough competition from the Phoenix Suns, who are still alive in the playoff picture and would love to pair Russell with Devin Booker, one of his closest friends, as Prime Time Sports Talk recently reported.
Russell is one of the most gifted young scorers and playmakers in the league right now so the Warriors may be wary to let him go unless the price is right.
And with the trade deadline right around the corner, we'll see which team is willing to part ways with the most assets in order to get him.