Decoding Jimmy Butler’s plan to force a trade
The latest report from the Jimmy Butler saga in Minnesota isn’t a good one for anyone with the Timberwolves (except maybe Butler?):
We seem to know what the endgame is here. It’s obvious Butler wants out of Minnesota, but he’s taken a bizarre route to get to that goal.
We here at For The Win think we’ve figured it out. Let’s break down what we think Butler’s plan was all along:
Step 1: Request a trade
The reports came out in September that Butler informed management he wants out, months after another report that indicated the veteran had problems with teammate Andrew Wiggins.
Step 2: If the Timberwolves don’t trade you, blow up a practice to hasten the process
A reminder this just happened three weeks ago:
But wait, what’s that?
“You (bleeping) need me?” Why would Butler scream at the team’s general manager if he wants to leave?
It’s pretty simple. You have to make it look like you want to stay, and you have to prove to other teams that they (bleeping) need you too. And then you might just have an interview with Rachel Nichols in which you try to sell the world on your passion for the game.
Step 3: Put it all behind you and show you’re trying to help the team you’re on
It started with this Instagram message:
And it continued when he said this to the media ( via the Star Tribune) before the season started:
“I have no worries in the world,” Butler said after shootaround Wednesday. “I’m fortunate to be able to play basketball every day with these incredible group of guys and seriously just going out and playing basketball.” …
“I just want to hoop and be out there with my soldiers, go to war, try to the best of my ability help us win,” Butler said.
Step 4: Play well and prove you’re still good
He’s averaged 22.5 ppg, 5.3 rpg, 1.3 bpg, 3.0 spg. The Timberwolves have won three games thanks to that.
Step 5: Begin a holdout after you’ve reminded other teams you’re healthy
I guess that’s what this reported move is all about, if it’s indeed “extended”? Although maybe it’s just due to “general soreness.”
Step 6: Get traded
Let’s see if the Timberwolves can actually get this done with their disgruntled superstar.
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