The Minnesota Timberwolves offered D'Angelo Russell a four-year, $107 million contract, according to sources. The Los Angeles Lakers also had an offer nearing $100 million but it was in limbo as they waited for Kawhi Leonard to make his choice.
Russell instead took the Golden State Warriors' four-year, $117 million max offer, which also came with an uncertain future but a chance to learn under a trio of future Hall of Famers in Stephen Curry, Klay Thompson and Draymond Green.
Many have speculated that the Warriors will eventually trade Russell.
“I just don’t care (about the buzz),” Russell said. “Simple as that. I just don’t care. “When you say max contract to come in and learn from these guys as much as you can as quick as you can — because you don’t know when you’ll be gone, shipped out — that’s what I’m doing. I can’t control that. I can’t control if Bob Myers is like, yo, let’s go get such and such for this and make this pick. That’s his job. I can’t control it or say anything about it, especially if I’m a part of it. So I don’t waste energy worrying about it.”
Russell had verbally agreed to the deal with the Warriors before he went to his infamous helicopter meeting with the Wolves.
“An awkward goodbye on the tarmac,” one source said.
Russell talked about the decision to join the Warriors.
“It wasn’t even necessarily about, oh, me and Steph are going to be in the backcourt, is this going to work? Is it not going to work?” Russell said. “Klay’s coming off injury. They’re a little older. These are all the pros and cons. But it was more like, you know, I get to take a year and just learn from all these guys.”
Russell stopped himself when he mentioned that it might be a one-year partnership.
“Well, we signed a four-year deal,” he said. “Hopefully, four years. I get to take four years and just learn. I’m going to play basketball. That’s what I do. But learn off the court. I can pick Steph’s brain about anything. That’s a luxury to have. You build those relationships, you learn what you like, what you want to know and become a better all-around person.”