Playing game of smoke and mirrors

Playing game of smoke and mirrors
September 27
03:00 2018

Jimmy Butler of the Minnesota Timberwolves has made his stance loud and clear. He wants out of Minnesota, period. 

Butler has stated his preferred teams are the Los Angeles Clippers, New York Knicks or the Brooklyn Nets. 

Butler is the latest star player to make it known, publicly, that he wants to be moved from his current team.

Kawhi Leonard, Chris Paul, Paul George and Kyrie Irving have all done the exact same thing that Butler is attempting to do.  While the Timberwolves have said they will not trade Butler, we all know they are playing a game of smoke and mirrors until the right offer comes along.

It would be in the team’s best interest to trade Butler while his value is at its highest.  The longer the wait, the lower the trade value, in my opinion.  It would be disatrous for them to let Butler walk in free agency and get nothing in return.

I question why Butler would want to leave Minnesota playing along side Karl-Anthony Towns and Andrew Wiggins.  Towns is trending toward being one of the top three big men in the league and a top 10 player overall.  Wiggins, a former No. 1 overall pick, is a solid player who averaged 18 points, 4 rebounds and 2 assists last season.  Those numbers are down from the year before, but Wiggins is a solid third option for any team in this league.

Butler is a good player, but he is not on the level of a Leonard, Paul or Irving to request a trade to certain destinations with hopes of teaming up with another star player.  The Clippers, Nets and Knicks will all have enough money to bring in two max players next season.

No shade, but if Jimmy Butler is the best player on the team, that team will not win an NBA Championship.  If I were the Timberwolves, I would not limit my options by only dealing with the teams Butler has on his wish list.

There have been reports out of Minnesota that Butler has had run-ins with teammates.  There were also reports that Butler had issues with some of his teammates while a member of the Chicago Bulls, the team he was traded to Minnesota from.

He is one of the best two-way players in the league, but he does come with some baggage.  He also has had a few injuries in his career as well.  Timberwolves head coach, Tom Thibodeau, seems to be one of the few people on the team who wants Butler to remain with the team.

Timberwolves owner, Glen Taylor, has now gotten involved with the Butler situation.  There are reports that say he is motivated to get a deal done soon, according to a league source.  This isn’t Taylor’s first rodeo with trading players.  He was heavily involved with the Kevin Garnett and Kevin Love deals when they left Minnesota.

The West is stacked about 9 deep with quality teams.  I guess Butler thought Minnesota would not be in the running for a championship any time soon, but I beg to differ.  The Warriors, Rockets, Thunder and the now LeBron-led Lakers all look better on paper than the Wolves, but that can’t be said two years from now. 

The window for winning with the Wolves is much longer with Wiggins and Towns than taking a max deal anywhere else.  When Butler looks back on this decision, he may have wished he had stayed in town. 

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Timothy Ramsey

Timothy Ramsey

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