Three years ago, the Sixers strolled into an exceptional situation. The Timberwolves, having shrugged off the unhappiness of star guard Jimmy Butler for the entire summer, had gotten desperate. After a tumultuous training camp in which Butler mostly sat out, except to come in and embarrass young teammates by loudly dominating them in a scrimmage before doing an ESPN interview, Butler appeared in 10 games before Minnesota finally had to wave a white flag and get Butler out of town.
The Sixers took advantage, acquiring Butler. Philadelphia gave up Robert Covington, Dario Saric and Jerryd Bayless for Butler, who had been an All-Star for four straight years. It was an extraordinarily scant price to pay for the Sixers, but that is what happens when teams look to trade star players from a position of desperation.