The Heat and Timberwolves were reportedly moving toward a Jimmy Butler trade, but talks broke down. Then, the Heat and Timberwolves were reportedly moving toward a Jimmy Butler trade, but talks broke down again.
Marc Stein of The New York Times in his newsletter on Taylor:
could have escaped his Butler nightmare by accepting a package from Miami that would have been headlined by the promising Heat swingman Josh Richardson and a protected first-round pick.
This trade offer looks good on the surface, but not enough details are known to properly evaluate it.
Additional pieces would have been required to satisfy salary-cap rules. Chiefly, the Heat would have had to send out additional salary. They have multiple players seen as having negative-value contracts – Tyler Johnson, Dion Waiters, Hassan Whiteside. Including one of those three in the deal would have made it worse for Minnesota.
Also, what were the protections on the first-round pick? That could change the value of it significantly. Even if the pick started as lottery protected, a key question would remain: What would happen if not conveyed in the set number of years? Would it become unprotected, or would it become a second-rounder or two? The difference in value is vast.
Maybe Taylor and the Timberwolves should have accepted this offer. But I don’t see enough to make that judgment with any reasonable degree of certainty.