Trade Demand: Jimmy Butler

This will be the first article on superstars demanding trades. Jimmy Butler is the first of the season so far. I will give a little background to the player and where they came from along with a few trade offers that could happen.

Jimmy Butler has one of the most inspiring stories in the NBA. Assuming you haven’t heard his story, Jimmy Butler was born in Houston Texas. Butler’s father abandoned him when he was just an infant. At the age of 13 his mom kicked him out because according to Butler, she said “I don’t like the look of you. You gotta go.” Anyone else would have given up any dreams of playing professional sports at this point, but he didn’t. He was homeless at the age of Thirteen. He still excelled in high school sports, he averaged 19.9 points per game in his senior year. He wasn’t the most recruited out of high school and attended Tyler Junior College. After his time at Tyler, he would go onto get a scholarship from Marquette. His best season would be his third and final season where he would average 15.7 points per game on shooting 49 percent from the field, with 6.1 rebounds and 1.4 steals a game as well. These are good numbers but nothing from this stat line jumps out as a star. He would then declare for the 2011 NBA draft where he would be selected by the Chicago Bulls with the 30th pick in the first round. That is his path to the NBA, now let’s get into the present and what has happened recently in the news.

Jimmy Butler played last year for the Minnesota TimberBulls. Wait, Timberwolves, sorry bad habits. He averaged 22.2 points per game, 5.3 rebounds and a career-best 47.4 percent shooting as well. Jimmy had a good season, where he was also named an all-star reserve for the Western Conference. The stats Butler put up, would be considered a good season right? Apparently, there were many locker room problems throughout the season. A couple of days ago, a report came out that Jimmy Butler was having a meeting with coach Tom Thibodeau about his future with the team. It isn’t clear how it went, but Butler went onto demand a trade before media day, which is on Monday. He also gave three teams he would like to be traded to, the Los Angeles Clippers, Brooklyn Nets, and the New York Knicks. Now on paper, the Timberwolves should have worked. You had a decent point guard in Jeff Teague, one of the NBA’s best two-way players in Jimmy Butler, an up-and-coming player in Andrew Wiggins, and a future superstar in Karl-Anthony Towns. It should have worked, but why didn’t it?

Well in the new age of the NBA, shooting reigns supreme. The best shooter out of the four was Karl-Anthony Towns with 42 percent from behind the arc, then Jeff Teague with 36.8 percent, then Jimmy Butler with 35 percent and finally rounding them out is Andrew Wiggins with 33 percent. Usually, your best shooter will be a guard or a wing. The problem with your center being your best shooter is if he’s outside taking jumpers all the time, then he won’t be able to grab rebounds. This team also had its problems with personalities clashing. It has been noted that KAT cares about winning, but his numbers will come first. Andrew Wiggins has also been accused of playing for money and not for the game. Also, it has lead to Stephen Jackson, who is an NBA champion, questioning Wiggins’ heart. Jimmy Butler has a very intense personality, similar to Tom Thibodeau. Both of them mesh well obviously, but the others never really seemed to. Now let’s go look into the best fits for Butler.

Looking at all three of the rosters, we will start with the Brooklyn Nets. I see this as the worst team he could go to. Not because they’re the laughing stock of the NBA, but because of the shooting. The starting lineup would most likely be Russell at the point guard, Dinwiddie at the shooting guard, Hollis Jefferson at the small forward, Kenneth Faried at the power forward and Jarret Allen at center. I think this would be a similar problem to Minnesota, the lack of shooting created spacing problems and it became difficult to keep up with modern teams like the Rockets or Warriors. Another major problem would be the pieces available in a trade. The Nets should never think about trading any more draft picks unless it is to get more. That limits what they are able to offer. This is the trade I came up with is a terrible trade for the Nets, but I couldn’t see Nets parting ways with Russell.

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The next team for Butler would be the New York Knicks. This is a better fit, in terms of shooting. Courtney Lee, Trey Burke, and Kristaps Porzingis are all solid shooters. Butler would be a huge upgrade over Tim Hardaway Jr. but the Knicks have pretty much the same problem as the Nets, lack of pieces to move. But, they also don’t want to trade for someone they could get in free agency next summer. They have a good point in that sense, they don’t want a repeat of Carmelo Anthony, they want to rebuild step by step. If they really did offer a trade, this would be what it could look like:

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I believe the best fit out of the three teams Butler chose, would be the Los Angeles Clippers. They offer a great situation with a competitive team. They may not be contenders, but they do have a dynamic offensive guard in Lou Williams. A bulldog defender in Patrick Beverly. If you add Jimmy Butler to the team, it could make a scary defensive backcourt and a versatile offense as well. Although they’d probably have to give up Tobias Harris in the trade, the addition of Butler would create a dynamic offense and a stifling defense. This is an idea for a trade:

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I believe Jimmy Butler won’t be traded to a team that he wants. As of now, Thibodeau won’t trade him, while the TWolves owner Glen Taylor, is okay with it. We will see what happens from this situation, but don’t expect Butler to sign an extension with the Timberwolves.

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