Remember when we were all super excited that the Timberwolves had traded for Jimmy Butler? Yeah that was great wasn't it? Hold on to that feeling and don't forget it, because as Wolves fans I don't think we're going to experience that feeling for a while.
The last chapters in this stupid Jimmy Butler saga are bonkers. You've got rumors of disdain behind the scenes, that's nothing new. You've got rumors of Butler trying to strong-arm Karl Anthony Towns out of Minnesota. You've got reports of Butler seeking CRAZY money from the Wolves prior to their opportunity to Supermax him next season. You've got Butler forcing his way out only 59 games into the experiment and you've got a coach/GM that's threatening to walk away if things don't go his way.
Sounds more like a trashy daytime soap opera than it does the day-to-day of an NBA team that kicks off camp next week.
Still through all of the drama, through all of the rumors, there's one thing that continues to stand out to me above everything else. Through all of this, the only that that Jimmy Butler cares about is Jimmy Butler.
Early on in his time with the team people applauded Jimmy's no-nonsense, "old-school" mentality. It was clear that there were some personality issues on the team between seasoned veterans and new-school kids. It seemed like he was trying to shape the youngsters work ethics and rally the team around a common thought. But everyone, and I mean everyone kept pushing back against him. It quickly started to feel like it wasn't because they were stuck in their new-school ways but more so that Butler was isolating himself from the rest of the team and didn't really care to mend those bridges. He would show up, until he got hurt, put in his work and collect his paycheck.
Fast forward to now and go with the idea that Jimmy sat down with someone above him, presumably Taylor and/or Thibodeau and asked them to trade Karl Anthony Towns...or else. The team chose not to part ways with the budding star and that brings us to present day.
Butler is forcing his way out of Minnesota just over a year after telling all of us how excited he was to be here, how much he looked forward to reuniting with Thibs, how he admired the games of Wiggins and Towns.
Worse yet, he's not asking to be traded to the Lakers to play with Lebron, the Raptors to team up with Kawhai or the Celtics to run through the East. He's requesting a trade to the Knicks, the Nets or the Clippers.
None of those teams are close to competing as it is now. There might be a long-play here with another player forcing their ways to one of these teams as well, but right now it reaks of a money-grab. Send me to a big market where he can be the focal point, "the man". There aren't too many examples in league history where that sort of situation leads to championships, but there are plenty that lead to big time bucks and a "what could have been" career.
All of this just leaves me with the feeling that the only person that Jimmy Butler cares about whatsoever is Jimmy Butler.
If I were the Timberwolves I would do whatever I can to ship him off to Cleveland or Memphis and let him deal with it. Whatever you do, don't let him have his way and lose some of your leverage by appeasing his wish list of three teams.
Like many of you are, I'm done with Jimmy Butler.