Minnesota Timberwolves’ star point guard D’Angelo Russell continues to be brought up in trade talks as the deadline approaches, although one team unlikely to land the 26-year-old is the Miami Heat.
Just days after being linked to Jae Crowder, the Heat continue to test the waters on potential boosts to the lineup in a competitive Eastern Conference.
Miami has some interest in Russell, who’s making $31.4 million this season on an expiring contract, but trading for Russell would almost certainly require the Wolves to take back Kyle Lowry, according to NBA insider Marc Stein.
Lowry has one more season after this one on his three-year, $85 million deal with the Heat signed in the summer of 2021. Minnesota, by all indications, is not interested in that sort of swap, per Stein.
Apparently it’s an idea that’s been floated by multiple league executives: Russell to another team performing below preseason expectations, which is where the Lowry rumor began.
Russell is no stranger to the trade chatter; word among league personnel of the Wolves’ openness to move him has persisted since the summer. With Russ in the final season of a four-year, $117 million agreement, there was little progress for any contract extension with the Timberwolves this past offseason, sources said, making him a natural trade candidate this winter.
“Yeah, it’s my life,” Russell told Yahoo Sports when asked if he’s aware of his name in the rumor mill. “That’s it. Just be conscious of it. You either take advantage of me and my ability, or f*** up the opportunity with me…It’s as simple as that.”
It certainly looks as though D’Angelo Russell has soured his relationship with the Minnesota Timberwolves, and although he represents the team’s most dynamic playmaker on the perimeter, it wouldn’t be surprising to see him dealt before the Feb. 9 deadline.