The NBA Trade Deadline is less than 24 hours away and rumors, legitimate and bogus alike, are being thrown around like the skinny kid in a mosh pit. On Wednesday afternoon, ESPN’s Chris Broussard announced that the Minnesota Timberwolves were showing interest in Utah Jazz forward Paul Millsap.
Millsap is one of the more proven and consistent power forwards in the league and has continued to be that this season for Utah. He’s averaging 15 points, 7.4 rebounds, 2.6 assists, one block and 1.3 steals per game on the year. But even though Millsap has obvious value as a player, his worth to the Timberwolves isn’t that high.
For the short term, he would be a tremendous acquisition while Kevin Love is still sidelined with his hand injury. He’ll provide them consistent play at the power forward position, something that hasn’t happened for them since Love re-broke his hand.
Once Love returns though, Millsap’s role will be much more complicated. He will most likely fall into the scenario that Derrick Williams dealt with when Love was on the floor. Essentially, he will become an over-qualified bench player who is being under-utilized. Ironically, Williams is the name that has been thrown around as the guy Minnesota would trade to get Millsap.
When Love returns, Millsap most likely wouldn’t be getting enough opportunity to truly show off his skills and talents. That would be a waste of one of the NBA’s most underrated and quality frontcourt players.
If the Timberwolves are just looking at Millsap as a rental player that they don’t plan to re-sign after his contract runs out at the end of the season, it’s still not the best idea because they would be giving up Williams for just two months of Millsap.
Williams hasn’t had a ton of value for the Timberwolves in his year and a half in the NBA, but that doesn’t mean he has limited value around the league. He is a young player with a ton of potential that just happens to be in a situation that doesn’t suit him. Teams would be willing to trade some pretty valuable assets for a player like him. Given that, trading him away for a two-month rental player doesn’t seem like a wise move.
Millsap is a great player in this league that most teams would be lucky to have. However, Minnesota shouldn’t continue to pursue a trade for him because of the simple fact that it doesn’t make any sense for their team.