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#pounditSunday, May 16, 2021

Timberwolves owner: It is in our interest to trade Jimmy Butler

Jimmy Butler

Minnesota Timberwolves owner Glen Taylor has spoken about the Jimmy Butler situation and finally weighed in.

Taylor talked with the Minneapolis Star Tribune, which he owns, for an interview. He told columnist Sid Hartman that it’s in the team’s best interest to trade Butler.

“Yes I think that he’s made it very clear that he would not re-sign with us at the end of the year and therefore it is in our interest to get a trade so that we can get a player or two to replace him that helps our team,” Taylor told Hartman.

Taylor told Hartman that Butler’s demand made a few weeks ago was the first time he’d heard about the All-Star wanting to be traded, even though Butler has said he told Minnesota that shortly after the team’s season ended. The owner also said that head coach Tom Thibodeau is not coaching for his job as many have speculated. Thibodeau is entering the third season of five-year deal for about $8 million per season.

Thibodeau has been reluctant to trade Butler for two reasons. One, he knows the team will not be as successful without him. Two, he does not want to lose leverage in trade talks by making it seem like they’re desperate to let him go.

Taylor’s stance on the Butler situation should not be too surprising. The owner reportedly told other teams that Butler is available in a trade.

For now, Minnesota is keeping Butler while looking to accommodate his trade request. If they know he’s going to leave in free agency, it would make sense for them to deal him. But at least they can keep him on the roster for now and see how well the team plays with him. They would have until February’s trade deadline to deal him.

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