With Butler seemingly staying put for the time being, Charania also reported the four-time All-Star is “expected to play” in Minnesota’s regular-season opener Wednesday against the San Antonio Spurs.
The Timberwolves’ home opener is Friday against the Cleveland Cavaliers. Butler discussed whether he believes fans will react negatively toward him.
“Sure. Go ahead, boo me,” he said, per The Athletic’s Jon Krawczynski. “It ain’t going to change the way I play. That’s going to make me smile more. So please, come on with it.”
This is the latest twist in the NBA’s biggest ongoing drama.
In September, Krawczynski reported Butler had requested a trade from the Timberwolves after meeting with head coach and president of basketball operations Tom Thibodeau. Nearly a month later, Butler remains in Minnesota.
ESPN.com’s Adrian Wojnarowski reported last week the Heat and Timberwolves were getting close to a trade but reached an impasse. Miami agreed to include Josh Richardson as part of the deal but balked when “Minnesota pushed late for a sweeter return on the four-time All-Star forward.”
With the regular season rapidly approaching, Butler made a memorable return to the Timberwolves at practice Wednesday.
Wojnarowski set the scene: “Butler was vociferous and intense throughout the scrimmages, targeting [Thibodeau], general manager Scott Layden and teammates, including Karl-Anthony Towns and Andrew Wiggins, league sources said.”
According to Wojnarowski, Butler also told Layden, “You f–king need me, Scott. You can’t win without me.”
Butler gave an interview to ESPN’s Rachel Nichols and said “a lot of it’s true” regarding the reports about the practice.
There’s no denying Butler’s value to Minnesota. The Wolves went 1-4 without him during their preseason, including a 143-121 drubbing by the Milwaukee Bucks.
Then again, the team may better off letting Butler stay at home rather than playing him in the regular season. It’s hard to see how Butler can coexist with Karl-Anthony Towns and Andrew Wiggins considering how vocal he has been criticizing the pair.
Should Butler take the court against the Spurs, it will be a must-watch spectacle.
Courtesy: Bleacher Report