Utah Jazz: 3 Karl-Anthony Towns trades the team could get involved with

Utah Jazz center Rudy Gobert vs Karl-Anthony Towns (Jeffrey Swinger-USA TODAY Sports)
Utah Jazz center Rudy Gobert vs Karl-Anthony Towns (Jeffrey Swinger-USA TODAY Sports) /
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Utah Jazz
RJ Barrett vs Utah Jazz (Chris Nicoll-USA TODAY Sports) /

Utah Jazz acquire promising young off-guard

This deal sees the Timberwolves taking a pretty standard pu-pu platter of future-focused assets for their possibly beleaguered superstar. Overall, it’s a reasonable haul, but it’s a little difficult to make the contracts work. That’s exactly where the Utah Jazz swoop in.

Admittedly, they’re not necessary in facilitating this deal. The Wolves could just take Quickly directly, and the money would work. On the other hand, this is a squad that already rosters potential NBA superstar Anthony Edwards. The Ant Man could play the 3 alongside Quickley, but the presence of starting-caliber Malik Beasley makes for a logjam at the 2 in Minnesota if this trade occurs.

Instead, the Wolves opt to acquire an extra first-round pick from the Utah Jazz in this scenario. The next fully-available pick the Jazz can offer comes in 2023, and since they’re not receiving a superstar in this trade, it would have to come with lottery protection. On the other hand, the Wolves also acquire athletic center Udoka Azubuike in this exchange.

From Utah’s point of view, that feels like a fair exchange for Quickley’s services. He just wrapped up a fantastic rookie campaign, averaging 21.2 points per 36 minutes in Madison Square Garden.

Some Jazz fans may balk at this trade on the basis of the preexistence of Jordan Clarkson. Superficially, that’s fair. Clarkson is a 7-year NBA vet in the thick of his prime. Surely, the NBA’s reigning Sixth Man of the Year is more equipped to pilot the second unit than a soon-to-be sophomore.

Nobody here is denying that, but the Utah Jazz should be in the market for a fourth guard to complete their rotation. Quickly showed enough in his rookie campaign to qualify as a significant upgrade over Quin Snyder’s current options in Jared Butler, Trent Forrest, Miye Oni or MaCio Teague.

Meanwhile, the Timberwolves may not net a single asset in this exchange that rivals the one they’re giving up in Towns, but it does fast track the rebuild they’ll be required to undertake should their franchise player request a trade. RJ Barrett made significant strides between his rookie and sophomore campaign, increasing his points per game from 14.3 to 17.6 and his three-point accuracy from 32.0 to 40.1%.

The Knicks will have to forfeit the most draft capital in this deal, as they’re the team acquiring Towns. Their draft picks are largely owed to other teams in the immediate future: they’ll have to part with their 2024 and 2025 first round picks unprotected.