Timberwolves Owner: Jimmy Butler Is Available

Defying his front office executives, Timberwolves owner Glen Taylor is telling other owners and GMs at the NBA’s Board of Governors meetings that Jimmy Butler is available and they can make trade inquiries directly to him, if necessary, according to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski.

Taylor’s willingness to deal the disgruntled swingman, who can become an unrestricted free agent this summer, flies in the face of an earlier report by Wojnarowski on Friday that the Timberwolves were rebuffing calls on Butler’s availability.

This leads to speculation that a showdown is looming between Taylor and Tom Thibodeau, the Wolves’ president of basketball operations and head coach, Wojnarowski notes. GM Scott Layden reports to Thidobeau and is the usual point person on trade talks.

Thibodeau has no desire to deal Butler in any scenario that would set back the team’s chances of making the playoffs again and advancing deeper into the postseason.

In contrast, it appears that Taylor’s mind is made up that Butler must go.

“The owner’s trading him,” a Board of Governors attendee told Wojnarowski. “That was made clear. It’s just a matter of when.”

There is a good possibility that Butler will not report to camp when it opens next week, according to Jon Krawczynski of The Athletic. Krawczynski details how the Butler-Thibodeau relationship deteriorated over the past year.

Thibodeau is willing to let any drama between Butler and the team’s other two stars, Karl-Anthony Towns and Andrew Wiggins, play out in training camp and into the regular season. Taylor, on the other hand, does not want to go through a potentially dysfunctional season and see the franchise’s image tarnished, Wojnarowski continues. The franchise’s business operations have successful marketed the team’s stars and don’t want that campaign completely ruined, Wojnarowski adds.

Taylor has gotten involved in trading high-profile players in the past, including Kevin Garnett and Kevin Love.

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39 thoughts on “Timberwolves Owner: Jimmy Butler Is Available

  1. acarneglia

    If Minnesota moves Butler they have to try and find a way to move Gorgui Dieng

    • How would you feel about Butler and Dieng to the heat for Whiteside, Richardson, and Winslow?

      I’ve been going through scenario’s with just about every team. Not sure how I feel about this one yet.

    • ClancyJ

      I don’t think they need to move Dieng, I think moving Teague would make more sense. Gibson played too many minutes last year, Dieng needs to be there since Patton is injured.

  2. Reflect

    This has the makings of a very public and controversial meltdown for the Minnesota front office. And I’m ready for it.

  3. greg1

    If Butler goes and Taylor’s the one that deals him, there is no scenario in which Thibs is the coach by season’s end.

    I’m not a Wolves fan, but feel bad for those who are that have to deal with the mess that is Thibs. Why is Rose going to get minutes at the expense of Tyus. Why were you the first guy in a lineup of one to sign Deng? After this power play and the inevitable bad breakup, I can’t see Thibs getting another NBA job for a while if ever.

    • ClancyJ

      I agree. Thibs should just be fired already, we know how this plays out.

    • FlaveFlava

      Butler should go, Thibs should be fired. Really isn’t any question about it at this point.

    • Michael Chaney

      I never understood why people were fans of Thibs. His teams usually play good defense, but they don’t score.

      Plus he burns out his players from giving them too many minutes.

      Plus he’s too loyal to “his guys.”

      Plus he’s stubborn.

  4. PeeWeeHerron618

    well when the owner says your available, it’s just a matter of time

  5. Ptn18

    The sad thing is the Timberwolves could have had Lauri Markkenan. That one will sting for awhile.

  6. Ptn18

    Tobias Harris should feel priviledged. Last season he was traded for Blake Griffin, this year it could be Jimmy Butler. Thibs is a lame duck coach.

  7. jfive

    somewhere in chicago, gar foreman and john paxson are enjoying a glass of whiskey a cigar and high fiving each other

  8. dust44

    This has the Knicks written all over it. Ntilikina, Lance Thomas and a first for Butler. They can add in Noah to make Thibs happy lol

  9. Adam37

    The wolves could have had Markkenen yes but they also could have had Donovan Mitchell and had a definite dynasty potential

  10. paladin

    Jimmy B and the owner GT think he is a Cadillac but they will wake up to find Jimmy is just a good running Chevy. They will not get anything in return but used junk with a new wax job. Jimmy wants the 5 yr/190 mill deal but who wants to pay that? The guy played 59 games last year, past performance says Nyet. Just takes one fool organization I guess. If they don’t find a real deal maker now this wrecks any chance of playing out this season and making playoffs. This looks like Chernyobl, total nuclear meltdown. Thibs is officially a lameduck coach with no semblance of authority. The owner just chopped him down like Paul Bunyon did a row of trees

    • Djones246890

      Jimmy Butler’s marketing team should be given a platinum award. He isn’t even worth half of what he wants.

      His negatives far outweigh this positives.

  11. At least Taylor is doing the right thing, which is not harder to be smarter than Thibs, he is a walking joke, never did anything in Chicago or Minny, hopefully will never see him again in the league as a HC. His teams always sucked on the offensive end, were it matters.

  12. MZ311

    Butler to NYK for next year’s first, Lee, and Hardaway or Frank. The Knicks don’t need that pick when the lineup will be Kyrie, Jimmy, Knox, Porzingis, and Robinson.

  13. wellyou'rewrong

    So much for that playoff run.

    Thibs was a great higher though! He totally showed running players into the ground would be a worthwhile investment!

  14. Z-A

    This is why the Lakers are dumb. They stretched their only contract they could use in a trade.

  15. Z-A

    RoCo, Chandler, and a top-20 protected Pick for Butler. Bout the only value trade you’ll get.

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