Jimmy Butler is a member of the Philadelphia 76ers, weeks after it became obvious that he didn’t want to be on the Minnesota Timberwolves anymore. Butler was traded to the 76ers for Robert Covington, Dario Saric, Jerryd Bayless, and a 2022 second-round pick.
How’d we get here? Long story.
The four-time All-Star made his desire to be traded known in the days before training camp, though if you ask him, he’d say he had done so behind the scenes months ago. That set off a firestorm behind the scenes, with team president/head coach Tom Thibodeau digging his toes in the sand against the reported wishes of owner Glen Taylor. The Timberwolves seemed close to a deal several times with the Miami Heat and Houston Rockets, but Thibodeau held firm.
In response, Butler returned to play out the final year of his contract, though not before a defiant practice in which he trash-talked general manager Scott Layden and several teammates, followed by an organized tell-all interview with ESPN.
Eventually, after a fifth straight loss on the road to the Kings, even Thibodeau realized the situation was beyond the point of no return. So, Butler is on the 76ers, who now become the most interesting team in the league.