Disgruntled Minnesota Timberwolves All-Star Jimmy Butler had drama-filled and tense practice with his teammates and coaches on Wednesday, according to ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski.
Butler practiced with Minnesota for the first time since requesting a trade back in mid-September. According to Wojnarowski, Butler turned to GM Scott Layden and yelled "You (expletive) need me, Scott. You can't win without me."
Wojnarowski also said that Butler "boldly challenging teammates, coaches and front office executives," and they were left "largely speechless" with his actions. Despite Butler's tense behavior and strong words, it didn't lead to any fights or other verbal confrontations with coaches or players.
The Timberwolves kick off their season next Wednesday on the road against the San Antonio Spurs, but the four-time All-Star remains with the team. Wojnarowski and Marc Stein of the New York Times reported that a Butler deal with the Miami Heat fell apart on the weekend. Stein said the Heat offered Josh Richardson and a first round pick for Butler, but it wasn't enough for Minnesota.
On Wednesday, ESPN's Stefano Fusaro reported that the Timberwolves offered Butler to Houston in exchange for Eric Gordon and defensive stalwart P.J. Tucker. However, Houston wasn't willing to move out the latter in a potential trade.
Wojnarowski reported that Butler sought a trade to either the Brooklyn Nets, Los Angeles Clippers or New York Knicks, since all three have the cap space to give him the max contract. But none of the those teams appear to be seriously pursuing Butler at this time.
The situation in Minnesota is getting more dramatic and tension-filled, and the Timberwolves front office is under pressure to either get a deal done or ease Butler into the lineup. With only a week to go before the start of their regular season, things are going to get very interesting in the Gopher State.