Bill Simmons Has Had A Change Of Heart On the Gobert Trade

Photo Credit: Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports

Twenty-four hours before the NBA Trade Deadline, Bill Simmons released a podcast ranking his top 75 players in the NBA based on trade value. Jaden McDaniels barely missed the list as an honorable mention, Karl-Anthony Towns was in the top third, and Anthony Edwards was in his top 10.

But the most interesting placement was Rudy Gobert, especially after Simmons called the Gobert trade the worst in 30 years a season ago. Simmons listed Gobert in a category he called, “Sorry, he’s worth way more to us than to you.”

No. 50 is Rudy Gobert, who, almost a year ago, Wos and House and I did our worst contracts podcast, which, by the way, is coming back in a couple of weeks, my 2024 edition. And Rudy was one of the first three that got taken. And in the span of a year, has made an improbable, incredible turnaround.

And it didn’t totally make sense to me until I listened to Austin Rivers’ podcast with [Gobert]. Rudy was hurt last year, and I don’t think they really did a good enough job of telling us how banged up he was.

He gets traded, he’s banged up in all these different ways, and just had the year from hell. And then he spent the summer getting his ass back in shape, and he’s been really good for him. And that’s a team that has a chance to win the title, he’s one of the reasons.

I would say he would be 50-to-1 to be a top-50 trade value guy a year ago, but he made it.

I still think they gave up way, way, way too much in that trade, but now he’s a top-50 asset, so obviously, he wasn’t that bad.

Let he who thought the Gobert trade would work out for Minnesota last year cast the first stone here. But Simmons was definitely the ringleader of the “worst trade in NBA history” camp. Still, he was somewhat justified. Last summer, the Wolves blew up a popular team to bring in a controversial player.

Good on Simmons for coming around on Gobert, though, We still need to see if teams can play Gobert off the court in the playoffs. But he’s anchoring the league’s No. 1 defense in the regular season and has become a popular player in the Twin Cities. Oh yeah, and we’d be remiss not to mention that Simmons calls the Wolves title contenders here. That certainly wasn’t happening last year.

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