Clippers May Pass On Pursuing Jimmy Butler

The Clippers may not pursue Jimmy Butler as a free agent this offseason, as the team doesn’t view him as a top-tier target, sources tell The Athletic’s Sam Amick.

Los Angeles traded Tobias Harris to the Sixers at the deadline in a deal helps the franchise obtain their goal of adding two max-level players. The team reportedly plans to pursue Kevin Durant and Kawhi Leonard, though should one or both sign elsewhere, other stars will be prioritized over Butler.

Butler will be a free agent after the season and it’s no lock that the Sixers will make maximum salary offers to both Butler and new addition Tobias Harris, Zach Lowe of ESPN.com hears. Lowe adds that it’s nearly certain that both players will find a max deal if they look outside of Philadelphia.

The Clippers will have approximately $53.19MM in cap space this summer, which is just short of the two projected maximum salary slots. Amick writes that the front office already has a plan in place that carves out the additional cap space needed to bring in two stars (approximately $65MM total) without shipping out Danilo Gallinari, who is set to make $22.62MM next season.

Rival teams believe Leonard will sign with the Clippers should he leave Toronto. Durant’s future remains a mystery with the former MVP unwilling to delve into free agency hypotheticals.

Owner Steve Ballmer will angle to bring both in and he has a promising pitch. The Clippers are stocked with resources. Los Angeles has several first-round picks outside of their own selections and Ballmer’s personal net worth, which comes in at $38.4 billion—the most among all North American franchise owners—indicates that the team won’t be phased by potential luxury tax hinderances akin to LeBron James‘ super teams in Miami and Cleveland.

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15 thoughts on “Clippers May Pass On Pursuing Jimmy Butler

    • Z-A

      He isnt Top Teir, hes a Top-25, Top-30 player depending on how you rank guys. He may get 4 yr Max offers from one of the 9 teams that can offer it. What he cant do is get a 5th yr and there are two ways he can get it. 1) he gets a 5 yr max from the Sixers. 2) he opts in and the Sixers give him a 4 yr max extension in-season whenever they are allowed to extend him.

      No one will give him 19.8M at age 35 if he signs a 4 yr deal.

      Just an outside the box idea. That’s if Elton views him as a LT solution and not a problem.

    • x%sure

      They will come back to him, but I don’t think Butler is one of those gunning for coastline glamour. Excuse me, “big market”. He just wants the biggest possible number on his paycheck.

      Z-A- I lost track after that 3rd sentence but 5 years from now, $20m will not be so bad after cap inflation and he will still be in shape.

        • Z-A

          Thought so too. But hell be entering his Age 35 season when he finished a 4 year deal. So when he is 35 he is very unlikely to garner a 19.8M contract. It’s almost a lesgue wide, media wide consensus that the last year of a 4 yr deal will be Carmelo-esque bad and a 5th year even worse. What I was eluding to was a bargaining tactic… hey well give you a round about 5th year, but you opt-in for your 19-20 option at 19.8M and well extend you 4 more years. Like Kevin Love did.

          Sixers will most likely regret the last year or two, but it will be a good 3-4 year min. run with this core.

          • x%sure

            What he cant do is get a 5th yr and there are two ways he can get it.”

            Melo is not a good comparison to Butler, a different kind of body arrogance.

            I think ZA is saying Sixers should promise Butler a 4yr max after he opts in for next year, instead of offering a 5yr max this summer?– interesting.
            This basically pushes back the 4year max run by one year, that year, 19/20, at the scheduled $19.8m. This would save the Sixers capspace/money for 19/20.
            Butler might scowl at the gap ($15.4m lost) and at relying on a future promise but it might be better over time than a 4yr deal from another team. And it might be all Philly offers.

            Five-year comparisons:
            1.signs w/Sixers 5yrs: $190m
            2.Z-A ‘promise’ deal: $177m(?est)
            3.new team 4yrs: $141m+$atAge34

            For the extension value on (2) I am using the last 4 years of a 5yr deal, which may not be exactly right.

            Also for (2), the contracts’ actual present value would be lesser than indicated, because in yr1 the salary would be $19.8m not $37.2m as in (1)&(3).

            The present values of all three income streams would have to be calculated, which, I pass for now.

  1. 13morg13

    As a sixers fan that great. Butler is very good and on a very good roster of sixers he is the most clutch. Sixers I hope resign him.

  2. i hate my father

    Smart people working for the Clippers. Not settling for the 8th and thinking bigger is a great move

  3. Jtsanders84

    If Butler gave up making noise, giving up usage would have never lost him money. People would point to all the positives of him being a “super role player” and a “plug and play” guy because so many of the top players have unique skill sets. Jimmy’s abilities fit on any roster creation. Notably, he’s probably on a team with the worst possible roster creation to highlight his talents.

    Since Butler has not stopped making boise, I think teams will be reticent to bring him aboard especially since most of the teams that have max money have their sights set on something shinier.

    • x%sure

      I like your language but Butler’s edge is one of his features. To some people anyway. There are 9 teams with max space next year, & it only takes one as they say.

  4. Why would you bring in a Cancer like Butler? I would run fast from him but f you want to build a winner. Just ask the Lakers if now they would still go back and sign BRON , BRON ?

    • Dodgethis

      The answer is yes, because he’s the only one they have convinced to sign with them. Without him they are a lottery team at best

  5. It’s easy to imagine Butler will be made available. In last night’s game he barely touched it, which, given the influx of talent and the roster being in a state of transition wouldn’t have been an issue, but his body language wasn’t great…

      • Djones246890

        Bingo. Butler isn’t gonna like how it plays out on the Sixers, going forward. If he isn’t THE man, he pouts, and then t goes to sh l t.

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