Wed, Feb 8, 2023 at 8:45pm


In a three-way trade, the Los Angeles Lakers acquired guard D'Angelo Russell from the Minnesota Timberwolves, and guard/forward Malik Beasley and forward/center Jarred Vanderbilt from the Utah Jazz; Minnesota acquired guards Mike Conley and Nickeil Alexander-Walker, a second-round draft pick in 2025 and a second-round draft pick in 2026 from the Jazz, and the right to swap second-round draft picks in 2024 from the Lakers; and Utah acquired forward/center Juan Toscano-Anderson, center Damian Jones, a first-round draft pick in 2027 and guard Russell Westbrook from the Lakers.

What does it give the Los Angeles Lakers
The Lakers finally decided to pull the trigger on a major trade involving Westbrook and future assets. This particular trade only cost the team one future first-rounder ('27) and adds three solid players who should help the team immediately. Russell might replace Dennis Schroder as the starting point guard, while Beasley and Vanderbilt should become key role players off the bench.

What does it give the Minnesota Timberwolves
For Minnesota, adding Conley offsets losing Russell. The former could be a better fit for the Timberwolves, since he is more of a true leader with the ball in his hands. He is also familiar with center Rudy Gobert from their days together in Utah. Alexander-Walker is also a young point guard, so the team now has a surplus at that position. The T'wolves did well to add future second-rounders in this deal.

What does it give the Utah Jazz
For Utah, a team that was not supposed to compete for a playoff spot this season, this trade hurts their chances of getting into the postseason dance. The Jazz are expected to buy out Westbrook, leaving them thin at the point guard position. Toscano-Anderson and Jones are depth players up front, where Utah is already very deep. Is Utah done, or could they do something else before the deadline?

Fantasy impact
The biggest fantasy loser here could be Westbrook, who had settled in nicely as a sixth man with the Lakers. His next team will likely use him a lot less, so buyer beware. Conley's stock could be back on the rise after the move to Minnesota. Russell's role will be key to his fantasy fortunes with the Lakers, while Beasley, Vanderbilt, Alexander-Walker, Toscano-Anderson and Jones have similar value with their new teams as their old ones. Most of this group can be safely ignored in many formats.

Player focus

Minnesota Timberwolves

Mike Conley G

Nickeil Alexander-Walker G/F

Draft pick - Round 2 in 2025

Draft pick - Round 2 in 2026

right to swap second-round draft picks - Round 2 in 2024