Rudy Gobert, Dejounte Murray Trades Viewed as ‘Reckless’ by Some NBA Executives | News, Scores, Highlights, Stats, and Rumors
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“But there is always risk, no matter how great the players involved,” Lowe wrote. “Several front-office executives around the league used a word beyond ‘risk’ to describe the recent Atlanta and Minnesota deals: reckless.”
The Jazz received five players (Malik Beasley, Patrick Beverley, Leandro Bolmaro, Walker Kessler and Jarred Vanderbilt), four first-round selections (2023, 2025, 2027 and 2029) and a 2026 first-round pick swap for Gobert.
The Spurs landed three first-round choices (2023, 2025, 2027), a 2026 pick swap and Danilo Gallinari for Murray and Jock Landale.
Both teams are certainly hoping that their new veterans are the missing pieces needed to open a championship window, but they are taking great risks by sending away multiple first-round picks to do so. The Timberwolves in essence sent five first-rounders to the Jazz, as Kessler went No. 22 overall in this year’s draft.
“Future planning is passe, apparently,” one front-office executive told Lowe.
At the very least, both the Wolves and Hawks have strong foundations to improve upon, even if they were both just fringe playoff teams last year.
Minnesota has a solid young trio in Karl-Anthony Towns, Anthony Edwards and D’Angelo Russell that pushed the second-seed Memphis Grizzlies to six first-round games.
Atlanta has one of the best young scorers in the game in Trae Young, who led the Hawks to the Eastern Conference Finals two years ago. That’s in addition to talents such as John Collins, De’Andre Hunter and Clint Capela.
Adding Gobert and Murray instantly boosts each team’s respective 2022-23 profile, although it’s clear both teams have pushed their chips to the middle of the table with these moves.
Still, Gobert is a three-time Defensive Player of the Year and three-time All-Star who averaged 15.6 points, 14.7 rebounds and 2.1 blocks per game last year.
The pressure is off him to produce much offensively with Towns, Edwards and Russell all very capable of putting up 20 or more per night, so he can focus on being the dominant defensive and rebounding presence that has allowed him to carve out a successful NBA career.
Murray is a nightly triple-double threat who should take a ton of scoring and ball-handling pressure off Young. He averaged 21.1 points, 9.2 assists and 8.3 rebounds last year and should be a solid second or third scorer on the Hawks as he and Young look to form one of the game’s top backcourts.
Regardless of how these experiments turn out, the Hawks and Timberwolves will be two of the most interesting teams to watch when the season kicks off October 19.