See more of the story

It's been about two months since the Timberwolves shook up the NBA offseason — and their own roster — by trading several players and draft picks for star Utah center Rudy Gobert.

The blockbuster is the sort of deal that doesn't come together overnight — and almost always falls apart before it gets to the finish line.

But this one went through, and recently Timberwolves President of Basketball Operations Tim Connelly — new to the organization himself after coming over from Denver — shed some light on the process.

"Ninety-nine percent of conversations end with nothing," Connelly said on Tuesday's Daily Delivery podcast, recorded at the Star Tribune stage at the State Fair. "You're just constantly talking."

Why is it so hard to close a trade?

"We have countless conversations and the vast majority end up with 'thanks but no thanks,'" Connelly said. "So it's difficult to make any trade. It's extremely difficult to make a trade for a caliber of player like that. It's fun but its' a lot of liar's poker as well, trying to figure out the motivation of the opposing team."

What made this deal different and allowed it to get to the finish line? Relationships play a big role in building trust.

"When we made that trade we were concurrently talking about other trades," Connelly said. "You're never certain how real the other side is. Thankfully we were dealing with a group of guys in Utah that we knew very well and are really good people."

The package the Wolves sent out was huge, including four future first-round picks, 2022 first round pick Walker Kessler and key contributors Malik Beasley, Patrick Beverley and Jarred Vanderbilt.

"We're trying to redefine how the league views us," Connelly said. "We knew we gave up a lot, but the hardest thing to find is elite talent and elite happy talent is even harder to find."

So the Wolves won the trade?

"You don't know if a trade is good or bad for years," Connelly said. "The metric we're going to really focus on: Is our team better? Can we be better than we were last year? Can we play more meaningful playoff series? Can we advance? It's a lot to ask. It won't be easy or seamless. I'm sure there will be some clunky moments initially. But we felt like we took a huge step forward with the acquisition of Rudy."