By Gerrel Sayles, Contributor
On Nov. 9, the Philadelphia 76ers sent forward Dario Saric and forward/guard Robert Covington, guard Jerryd Bayless, center Justin Patton and their 2022 second round pick in exchange for Minnesota Timberwolves guard/forward Jimmy Butler.
This was the necessary move for both teams. This was a win-win situation given the fact that Butler forced Minnesota’s hand. The T-Wolves ultimately got pieces in return instead of nothing at all if they didn’t end up trading him. Also, as time went on, the trade packages could’ve been worse.
Now, the Timberwolves get two solid role players to pair up with cornerstones Karl Anthony-Towns and Andrew Wiggins. Although the players they received aren’t all-stars, they can still produce.
While Covington is a solid “3-and-D” player, Saric is a decent all-around player who would fit in any system. Adding the second round pick doesn’t hurt, but ultimately, the Timberwolves will waive Bayless.
For the Sixers, this move was needed: they needed a veteran, all-star caliber player to put them over the edge. Butler plays tremendous defense and can score 25 points on any given night.
Now, Philadelphia has a closer in Butler and, with J.J. Reddick on the wing, the Sixers have excellent 3-point shooters to go alongside Ben Simmons and Joel Embiid. Although the Sixers have other holes to fill, this is a huge roster upgrade.
Lastly, Butler is in a better situation: he doesn’t have to deal with Western Conference teams and gets away from the immature Timberwolves.
He also has the option to leave the 76ers in the off-season if he doesn’t like Philadelphia. It’s all up to Philadelphia to figure out what they want to do with their team and the culture will dictate whether or not Butler is a short-term or long-term asset.
Ultimately the trade was great for both sides and it’ll be interesting to see how it pans out.