Clippers trade rumors: L.A. interested in Shabazz Muhammad


Los Angeles Clippers trade rumors: Besides gauging interest in their own players, the Clippers are now reportedly interested in trading for Shabazz Mahammad of the Minnesota Timberwolves.

The Los Angeles Clippers trade rumors have been heating up recently. Even after Doc Rivers denied that the team have been making trade calls, a report emerged the following day saying that they are still ‘gauging interest’ around the NBA in Jamal Crawford.

Whether or not that is definitely the case is unclear, but a player the Clippers are actually interested in going after has emerged.

Along with other teams that have reportedly been interested, the Clippers have been considering Minnesota Timberwolves shooting guard/small forward Shabazz Muhammad as a potential trade target, per Darren Wolfson.

However, while you may like the look of this trade if you’re a Clippers fan who would prefer to see the poor shooting and terrible defense of Crawford leave L.A., it’s unlikely at this stage that the Timberwolves will be willing to trade Muhammad right now. As Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports has reported, they are apparently unwilling to move him.

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As Woj has revealed, there are multiple teams interested in Muhammad but the Timberwolves are clearly holding strong at the moment and want to keep him. Although, considering their other talented wing players such as Zach LaVine, Andrew Wiggins and Kevin Martin, Muhammad isn’t at the top of the list when it comes to their core of guards. He is important, but if teams are willing to offer enough, it’s not totally out of the question that Minnesota could change their minds. In time, it may happen.

So, what could Muhammad bring to the Clippers if they do go after him?

He’s had a bit of an up-and-down career with the Timberwolves so far, and after being considered a disappointment in his rookie season, he took a major step forward in his sophomore year. He went from 3.9 points per game to 13.5 as his playing time shot up to 22.8 minutes a night, and he maintained a 48.9 percent shooting stroke from the floor while going 39.2 percent from deep. In fact, per 36 minutes, he averaged 21.3 points and 6.4 rebounds, which are highly respectable numbers.

Now in his third season, Muhammad has taken a bit of step down. He’s dropped to 17.4 minutes a night and his scoring has fallen to only 8.3, partly due to the drop in playing time and also due to his three point percentage hitting 27.3.

That being said, a shaky start doesn’t write off his talent. He’s great at getting to the rim, and not only looks to do so with aggressiveness but he can finish well once he gets there, by making 66.7 percent of his shots within three feet this season. With a strong post-up game for a 6’6″ wing player and entertaining athleticism, he’s a solid scorer and looks to do just that when he’s on the floor. Plus, his moderate 42 percent stroke from 10-16 feet out is another good aspect of his game.

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In comparison to someone like Crawford, Muhammad would be an upgrade. If his three point shooting returns, he’s a more reliable option from deep and he’s far better at attacking the rim to give L.A.’s bench another scoring dynamic. That would be a valuable asset to have, especially because he doesn’t hoist up as many long twos and contested shots. Not to mention the fact that Muhammad isn’t such a liability on defense like Crawford as well.

It doesn’t look like this trade will happen any time soon, considering the Timberwolves reportedly don’t want to move him yet and other teams are interested, too. That being said, it’s not out of the realm of possibility that they may change their mind at some point, although that would favor other teams over the Clippers. Doc isn’t going to make Minnesota reconsider with the way any of his role players are performing right now.

If anything progresses with their interest in Muhammad, or any other Clippers trade rumors emerge, we’ll keep you updated here at Clipperholics.