All-Star shooting guard Jimmy Butler made one of the biggest headlines during the 2018 NBA offseason when he publicly expressed his frustration with the Minnesota Timberwolves. Despite helping the team end their playoff drought, Butler was unhappy with the outcome of the 2017-18 NBA season, including the performances of Karl-Anthony Towns and Andrew Wiggins.
When the Timberwolves failed to immediately find a trade partner, Jimmy Butler decided to rejoin the Timberwolves and attend their activities. In a recent appearance on The JJ Redick Podcast, Butler talked about what happened during the infamous Timberwolves practice in the last offseason.
“We start doing some drills, and then at the end, we start hooping.,” Butler said, as transcribed by Deadspin.
“Now, that’s when all the stuff goes on. We play, we win, and I’m yapping, I’m yapping, I’m yapping, I always talk anyways, if you can’t tell, I’m always talking. Talking about how somebody can’t guard me, or nobody can beat me one-on-one. I do that, that’s what I do. This time it was just a little bit different because of whose team I was on, and I ain’t been around, so it was just, like, taken up a notch.”
In one of their practice games, Jimmy Butler gathered all the team’s third-stringers and played against the Timberwolves’ starters that featured Karl-Anthony Towns and Andrew Wiggins. Butler’s team won the matchup and words came out that the All-Star forward was dominating. Butler admitted that he dominated the game but not in terms of scoring.
— Hoops Rumors (@HoopsRumors) December 12, 2018
Jimmy Butler revealed that the “most interesting detail” of the controversial Timberwolves practice is that he only shot the ball once. Butler let his teammates shoot the ball and focused on the defensive end of the floor. Most people won’t have a hard time imagining Butler’s reaction when he stole the ball from Andrew Wiggins or blocked the shot of Karl-Anthony Towns.
NBA fans will be needing to wait longer to see those things happen in an actual game since Jimmy Butler’s new team, Philadelphia 76ers, won’t face the Timberwolves until January 15, 2019. When Butler left Minnesota, the Timberwolves surprisingly performed well and managed to learn how to win games. Unfortunately, the Timberwolves are still in the bottom half in the Western Conference and currently on a two-game losing streak.
Meanwhile, the Sixers have shown a massive improvement in their performance since acquiring Jimmy Butler from the Timberwolves. They have won seven of their last 10 games and currently the No. 3 seed in the Eastern Conference with a 19-10 record.