Jim Mone/Associated Press
As the ongoing Jimmy Butler saga in Minnesota drags on, the four-time All-Star is going to continue taking a cautious approach as he awaits a trade, even if it means sitting out games.
“I let them know,” Butler said Friday, according to ESPN.com’s Nick Friedell. “They don’t know how my body feels. So if I’m nicked up, then you can count on that. I don’t know. We’ll see how it goes. I don’t know what we plan on doing tomorrow. Obviously, I got to get some treatment along with a lot of other guys. But we’ll see whenever Sunday and Monday gets here.”
Butler recently raised eyebrows by sitting out Wednesday’s game against the Utah Jazz, which was attributed to his body “hurting.” Per ESPN’s Rachel Nichols, Butler does not want to risk soreness leading to an actual injury:
While some believe Butler is trying to force Minnesota’s hand in trade talks, he says that isn’t the case:
“I’m not worried about no deal. Injury or not, I got to take care of myself. I realize they have a job to do as an organization; I have one to do as a player. But if I’m not in the right with my body to go out there and do it, I don’t want to get hurt. I’ve been hurt almost every year now, so we’re going to take things with caution.
“If all of this talk wasn’t going on and I sat out because my body was sore, you would not be asking me things like that.”
He was back in the lineup Friday, posting 21 points on 10-of-23 shooting (0-of-8 from three) in a 116-99 loss to the Golden State Warriors. While the final score wasn’t close, the Timberwolves led until being outscored 33-12 in the fourth quarter. The loss snapped a two-game winning streak and put the team at 4-5 on the season.
Butler underwent knee surgery in February and returned to help his team snap a 13-season playoff drought less than two months later. He also underwent surgery on his right hand during the offseason and missed training camp and the preseason following his trade request going public.