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D’Angelo Russell-Warriors trade played part in Gersson Rosas firing from Timberwolves

D'Angelo Russell Timberwolves Warriors Gersson Rosas Karl-Anthony Towns

Gersson Rosas is done in Minnesota as the Timberwolves president was dismissed from the team in a shocking move just ahead of training camp.

In the bombshell piece dropped by Jon Krawczynski and Shams Charania of The Athletic, detailing the events that led to the firing, one particular Rosas move kept popping up—the Timberwolves trade for D’Angelo Russell.

The grievances on acquiring Russell aren’t against the player himself, but rather the fact that the Timberwolves gave away their first-round pick with very light protections.

The Timberwolves’ pick was only top-three protected, which resulted in them losing their selection when the pick landed at 7th. All things considered, it could have been much worse had the pick landed at the 4th or 5th spot. But based on the report, beyond the decisions that Rosas made, it was the work environment he fostered that had Timberwolves’ execs turned off.

If people did not agree with his decisions, as several in the front office did when they objected to his decision to include only light protections on a first-round pick that went to Golden State in the trade that brought Russell to Minnesota, he was confident that he would be validated in the long run.

“At the end of the day, it’s my job to make hard decisions and whether that’s popular or unpopular, the results will speak for themselves,” Rosas said in August. “Until we build a winning program, it’s my responsibility to make sure those changes are made when they’re made.

Rosas definitely had a conviction for his decisions in Minnesota, but that only gets you so far after the results make the argument for the contrary.

In a way, this seems like par for the course for a franchise that’s been floundering for years. Timberwolves fans are undoubtedly disappointed, but probably not surprised.