Minnesota Timberwolves president of basketball operations Tom Thibodeau is reluctant to trade Jimmy Butler. But his hand might be forced.
Jon Krawczynski reported that even if Butler is not traded in the next few days, he might not show up to training camp (via The Athletic):
“This is Jimmy Butler. Thibs’ hand-picked pride and joy. The one who pledged to have his back through thick and thin and drag this woebegone franchise out of the dank cellar and into the spotlight. Now he wants out. And there remains a real possibility that he will not report to training camp next week if a trade has not been consummated, sources said.”
The Athletic’s Shams Charania has said that Butler is “optimistic” that a trade can happen before training camp. Minnesota’s media day is September 24 and their training camp begins on September 25.
If he were to sit out training camp, it would hurt his trade value as other teams would have to assume they can get him for much cheaper. This would remove leverage from the Timberwolves, giving Butler more power.
This would be an ultimatum but considering Karl-Anthony Towns is not going to sign his extension until the Butler situation is sorted out, timeliness is important in their inevitable decision.