While there have been a plethora of potential landing spots thrown out for Minnesota Timberwolves guard Jimmy Butler, things have expanded in recent days. After the 29-year-old asked for a trade from the team, his preferred landing spots have shifted, and it’s resulted in rumors of a three-team deal being a strong possibility.
As ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski revealed, the Phoenix Suns may also now be in the mix as a third team.
Butler’s original list of preferred destinations featured the Brooklyn Nets, Los Angeles Clippers and New York Knicks. But since that point, we’ve seen a shift, as the All-Star informed the Timberwolves that the Miami Heat are now the team he’s interested in joining.
Likely Scenario for Butler, Timberwolves
Minnesota isn’t exactly chomping at the bit to move their star, even with the known fact that he’s unlikely to re-sign after this season. Timberwolves president and coach Tom Thibodeau has made it known he would prefer not to trade Butler, although it seems that’s not a realistic option at this point.
In the end, a potential deal is one that will have to keep the team as at least a playoff contender, which seems to be Thibodeau’s biggest looming concern. The coach has no interest in a rebuilding project, especially with big man Karl-Anthony Towns in his prime and a few talented pieces surrounding him.
Time will tell, but the safest bet at this point has to be Butler being traded out of town. The guard was granted permission to avoid media day and training camp, and the preseason is slated to begin this weekend. Don’t expect Butler on the Timberwolves’ roster when the 2018-19 season begins next month.