Anonymous GM: How do you pull it off? First, you talk it over with ownership. I analyzed the team and told them what I wanted to do, the guys I wanted to get rid of and the guys with future value whom we wanted to keep. We obviously traded away some of our veteran guys who gave us a better chance of winning right now for future draft picks and young players. The owners didn’t want to tread water any more than I did. They’d rather go down to the bottom with the hope of coming up, so they signed off on it. It wasn’t a fight at all. In a different season, it might not make sense, but this draft certainly makes it more appealing. Our coach understands that too. It’s no secret what we’re trying to do, and you can’t lie to him anyway or you’ll lose all trust. We never really had to tell him, because the handwriting is on the wall. He knows exactly what’s going on, and he’s good with it. What’s hard is keeping it from the players. If you took a poll in all 30 locker rooms, regardless of how the roster looks, I bet they’d all say they are a playoff team. That’s good, because you want them to play with effort and lose organically. You never tell the players not to try to win a game, but it’s obvious that you’re putting out a team that’s just not good enough to win.
June 25, 2017 | 7:38 pm EDT Update
Marc Stein: Reporting with @chrisbhaynes: League sources say Cleveland continues to pursue a Paul George trade, with Denver as the potential third team
Adrian Wojnarowski: Sources: Talks between Cleveland and Chauncey Billups for President of Basketball Ops job still ongoing, no immediate resolution expected.
It’s not a dream, Minnesota Timberwolves fans: Jimmy Butler has officially arrived. The Timberwolves tweeted a photo of Butler joined by coach Tom Thibodeau and GM Scott Layden after landing in Minnesota on Sunday. Butler showed up with a subtle look, sporting a white T-shirt, a football and a fanny pack around his waist.