Jimmy Butler Expected To Play In Wolves’ Season Opener

7:58 pmJon Krawczynski of The Athletic has reported that Timberwolves owner Glen Taylor made a rare visit to a team practice and actually met with Butler to discuss the current situation. Krawczynski reveals that Taylor and Butler came to an agreement during the meeting, with Butler agreeing to play in games at his usual competitiveness level while the team continues to work on finding a trade for the disgruntled star.

As noted below, talks between the Heat and Timberwolves over a potential Butler deal are reportedly dead at the moment, making it very likely that Butler will be suiting up for the Timberwolves for the foreseeable future.

1:08 pm: Timberwolves guard Jimmy Butler is expected to play in the team’s season opener against the Spurs on Wednesday, according to Shams Charania of The Athletic (Twitter link). Butler practiced with the team Sunday for the first time since he erupted during a scrimmage last week.

Charania also adds that the trade talks between the Heat and Timberwolves are dead for now, not ruling out the possibility of them restarting in the future. The teams were close to finalizing a deal centered around Butler and others one week ago, ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski reported, but the deal fractured just before completion.

Butler planned to practice with the team again this past Thursday, but Minnesota canceled the session in the morning. He has no desire to forfeit guaranteed money from games, and his immediate future with the team remains unclear.

The Timberwolves’ schedule after Wednesday includes a home game against Cleveland on Friday, followed by a road contest against Dallas on Saturday. Butler knows the possibility of getting booed at home exists amid the trade request that’s spanned over three weeks.

“Sure. Go ahead, boo me,” Butler told The Athletic’s Jon Krawczynski (Twitter link). “It ain’t going to change the way I play. That’s going to make me smile more. So please, come on with it.”

Butler’s original trade request came with three preferred teams, according to an ESPN.com report: Brooklyn, New York and the Los Angeles Clippers. The Nets and Knicks have had no traction with Minnesota to this point, and the Clippers believe they can convince Butler to sign with the club in free agency next summer.

Butler reportedly adjusted his list three weeks ago and named the Heat as his new top destination, as The New York Times’ Marc Stein reported. So far, the Heat have been unwilling to throw away each of their future pieces for a talent that can leave the team in nine months as a free agent.

Butler, 29, remains an accomplished two-way forward and consensus top-15 player in the NBA. His competitive spirit, fearless attitude and hard-pressed mindset intrigues teams looking for a star talent on the wing.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

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32 thoughts on “Jimmy Butler Expected To Play In Wolves’ Season Opener

    • oriolesravenstimberwolves04

      And then you remember it’s a ridiculous amount of money.

    • formerlyz

      Only thing that sucks is staying up to 5-6 am to watch some NBA tv games

  1. This guy ruined our season before it started. Whether he makes the team better or not on the court he has said he wants no part of it. Suspend him for behavior detrimental to the team, do not allow him to collect a pay check until you trade him away. Thibs needs to be fired asap, he made the wrong call trading for his boy, who wasn’t after all. And to add insult to injury, he knew before the draft that Butler wanted out and failed to act upon it. Thibs and Butler deserve each other, two ego driven delusional characters who leave messes behind them for others to clean up. The timberwolves team for better or for worse is Towns and Wiggins not Butler. If Thibs can’t get with the program then he is part of the problem. Time for the owner to grow a pair and act!

    • Robert G.

      I absolutely agree. Glen Taylor doesn’t get enough blame for creating this mess. His hire of thibs was done too quickly, without due diligence, and he ceded too much control. But now both thibs and Butler need to go, which will be awfully difficult at this moment in the season, but it has to be done.

      • Georgecostansa

        Honestly Glen Taylor is one of the worst owners of a team in any major sport. Absolutely pathetic. Hiring Tibs as a coach is an OK move, but to give him complete control of the roster? That’s insane to me.

        Can’t they do a sign and trade where the trade is contingent on Jimmy signing his extension with the acquiring team?

      • You can suspend him for behavior, and his statements and behavior justify said suspension. He is disruptive to team harmony as seen by his attitude at Thursdays practice. That is definition of behavior detrimental to the team. On top of it all his spoiled brat attitude makes him harder to trade and hence makes it harder to accommodate his demand. Dumb and dumber.

        • Luke Adams

          They’re not allowed to do it publicly, but there are no rules stopping them from doing it privately (and then making it public by anonymously leaking it to the media!).

            • Luke Adams

              If he were to publicly request a trade, yes. But I don’t think anything he’s done within the last month is punishable by the league.

  2. wettle

    sammerhead, I like regular popcorn with hot real butter and salt, not that microwave crap.

  3. Richard Hangslow

    Butler should never see the floor. Why would he put in an effort to win for a team that he knows he won’t be part of.

  4. As long as they pay him, they don’t have to play him or allow him to be with the team. The only thing guaranteed by any employment contract from the employer is $$. They don’t have to show that he did anything wrong, other than for PR purposes (which I don’t think are applicable here).

    The issue would not be whether he would play hard, of course he will. It’s whether he’ll prioritize his own numbers and accolades vs team success. The difference can be subtle, but over a bunch of games it can be very real and affect the play of others.

  5. wettle

    I wouldn’t play him for a couple of reasons, one bring he could get hurt and the Wolves get nothing for him. Second, I think chemistry could be awkward at best. Will Butler avoid padding to Wiggins and KAT, and vice-versa. They need to learn without Butler because he’s not gonna be there for the long haul.

    • Codeeg

      Learn without Butler? Whatever trade they make will bring in so many new guys that learning without Butler or with won’t matter post trade.

    • x%sure

      Yes, it is risky playing him. But it seems egos are already in play & bodies will follow!

  6. nentwigs

    He will not be playing with his usual intensity. Put yourself in his place. Would you go all out and open yourself up to possible injury for a team from which you only are playing for this year and from which you are demanding to be traded?

  7. JD396

    It’s like filing for divorce and still going on that vacation you had planned

  8. Guest617

    someone at some point’s gonna snap. if butler keeps yapping he’s gonna get smacked and Boone’s got his back. at least he’s relishing the media attn. overrated clown

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