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Jimmy Butler Watch: Tom Thibodeau Just Doesn’t Want Him To Go

Owner Greg Taylor has chosen to bet his chips on his unmotivated young stars and is ready to part ways with superstar Jimmy Butler. Butler has been seeking another destination since he announced in February that he wouldnt be resigning with the franchise. Cornerstone pieces KAT and Andrew Wiggins would rather not have Butler on the court or in the locker room this season. 

Several teams are willing to make a trade for the four-time All-star. 

All is a go for Butlers exit from Minnesota. Everyone is on board except GM/HC Tom Thibodeau who has no desire to see the first playoff team in Minnesota in 13 years broken up so quickly and unceremoniously. 

Regardless of how everyone else feels about it, conceding to Butlers demands makes Thibodeau —  who was brought in here to restore pride in a franchise that was lost after Kevin Loves departure to Cleveland –a loser in many regards. So hes purposely playing hard ball with teams and trying to either make Butler have to stay in Minnesota or fleece someone for the right to rip his team apart. 

Thats the only way Thibodeau could sleep at night after letting Butler walk out the door. 

Adrian Wojnarowski on Twitter

ESPN Reporting w/ Zach Lowe: Minnesota’s asking price for Jimmy Butler remains too steep for teams. Minny seeks quality vets/top prospects/future assets/cap relief. Too high a price for interested teams, including Miami. Sources are skeptical of Thibodeau’s desire to make deal.

I get Thibs’ gangster in the situation, but the T-Wolves owner, on the other hand,  doesn’t want to prolong the situation or let any further bad blood develop. The Miami Heat have been the latest to aggressively pursue a deal for Butler, but Minnesota’s counter was a non-starter for Heat president Pat Riley, league sources said. Along with Butler, Miami had been willing to accept Gorgui Dieng and the remaining $48 million left on his contract under the right circumstances, sources said.

The Los Angeles Clippers, Houston Rockets and Cleveland Cavaliers are among teams interested with Butler, league sources said. The Brooklyn Nets have interest, but they haven’t been engaged recently with Minnesota, sources said. Washington and Dallas are among teams who’ve gauged the asking price on Butler too, league sources said.

Minnesota wants a package of quality veteran players, top young prospects, draft picks and they want salary cap relief. Right now, that’s more than team are willing to pay for Jimmy Butler, so the negotiations continue. 

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