Jimmy Butler is the NBA’s vagabond star.
After getting traded by the Bulls and forcing his way off the Timberwolves, Butler landed with the 76ers. It really seemed Butler could stick in Philadelphia. Instead, the 76ers signed-and-traded him to the Heat last summer.
Adrian Wojnarowski on ESPN:
Philadelphia was not giving him that five-year max he wanted. They weren’t giving him a four-year max. They were out of the Jimmy Butler business.
Counter-report: The 76ers did offer Butler a five-year max, according to Tom Haberstroh of NBC Sports.
What actually happened during Butler’s free agency?
The 6-foot-7 forward says something went down behind the scenes that led to his departure, but he wouldn’t elaborate on the subject.
“Stuff just don’t work out. Nobody knows what really went on in Philly and we’re going to leave it that way,” Butler told Yahoo Sports. “But it was a great opportunity for me.”
Butler was pressed on what happened, but refused to shed more light on the situation.
“Just go with your gut. You’re not dumb. All of that will come out whenever it’s time,” he told Yahoo Sports. “Right now is not the time. I’m locked in with this. I’m happy, man. I’m smiling and my guys want me to be here, my organization wants me to be here, I want to be here and we’re going to ride this thing until the wheels fall off. I’m not saying Philly wasn’t great, man. We had some really good players. I talk to Joel [Embiid] damn near every f—–g day. It’s a brotherhood, man. I love that guy. I’m going to always have his back and I know he’ll always have mine.”
That sounds pretty juicy.
Maybe the facts will match the speculation. Maybe the true story is far more dull. Butler has his own way of viewing things, and he could be hyping the significance of something relatively benign.
The 76ers got Al Horford and Josh Richardson instead of Butler – an interesting exchange, but not one that necessarily indicates something went awry.
Butler’s quotes worked, though. Attention is on him, and I am intrigued to learn the full story.