Since the 2018 NBA offseason, Jimmy Butler has been finding his way out of the Minnesota Timberwolves. Despite the efforts from Timberwolves Head Coach Tom Thibodeau to convince him to stay, Butler looked determined to leave Minnesota. While he is still playing for the Timberwolves in the 2018-19 NBA season, team owner Glen Taylor promised to find him a new home as soon as possible.
One of the NBA teams who could take advantage of the ongoing drama between Jimmy Butler and the Timberwolves is the Washington Wizards. In late September, Adrian Wojnarowski and Zach Lowe of ESPN reported that the Wizards were among the teams who gauged the asking price on the disgruntled superstar. With their current performance, the Wizards obviously need more star power on their roster in order to have a chance of fully dominating the LeBron James-less Eastern Conference this season.
Pairing Jimmy Butler with John Wall and Bradley Beal could put them in a strong position in beating Eastern Conference powerhouse teams like the Boston Celtics and the Toronto Raptors in a best-of-seven series. In a proposed trade deal by Fansided’s Dunking With Wolves, the Wizards will be sending Otto Porter Jr., Markieff Morris, and a 2020 unprotected first-round pick to the Timberwolves for Butler and Taj Gibson. The deal works on ESPN‘s NBA Trade Machine.
If the trade becomes a reality, it will not only be beneficial for the Wizards but also for the Timberwolves. In exchange for Jimmy Butler, the Timberwolves will be acquiring two players, Otto Porter Jr. and Markieff Morris, who could help them remain competitive in the Western Conference, while the future draft pick will allow them to add another young and promising talent on their roster.
“The Timberwolves’ have more lineup freedom in acquiring Otto Porter and Markieff Morris, who can both play the stretch four or the wing. Most likely they’ll play the Jeff Teague, Andrew Wiggins, Otto Porter, Markieff Morris, and Karl-Anthony Towns lineup the most. Not only does this spread the floor more for Teague to facilitate spot up three’s all day long, but it also gives the Wolves’ more length on defense and can potentially help with full court defense when Towns is falling behind.”
Meanwhile, the potential acquisition of Jimmy Butler will undeniably boost the Wizards’ performance on both ends of the floor. In the seven games he played this season, Butler averaged 22.3 points, 5.0 rebounds, 3.6 assists, 2.6 steals, and 1.1 blocks on 49.1 percent shooting from the field and 36.4 percent from beyond the arc. However, before engaging in a trade deal with the Timberwolves, the Wizards should first get an assurance from Butler that he intends to stay in Washington after the 2018-19 NBA season.