Jimmy Butler went out of his way to challenge Karl-Anthony Towns, Andrew Wiggins at heated practice
During the heated scrimmages at practice Wednesday, Minnesota Timberwolves small forward Jimmy Butler went out of his way to challenge big man Karl-Anthony Towns and swingman Andrew Wiggins, according to Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN.
Wiggins and Towns are the two players Butler has an issue with. The four-time All-Star reportedly doesn’t respect Wiggins’ work ethic and approach on defense, and is fed up with the nonchalant attitude of Towns. Butler chose to play with the bench units during the scrimmages so he could go against Towns and Wiggins.
In his first season with the Timberwolves last year, Jimmy Butler helped Minnesota reach the postseason for the first time in 14 years. The 29-year-old averaged 22.2 points, 5.3 rebounds and 4.9 assists per game, and shot 47.4 percent from the field and 35.0 percent from beyond the arc.
However, when Butler suffered a torn meniscus in his right knee in February and underwent surgery, the Timberwolves struggled mightily and dropped from fourth place in the Western Conference to eighth place. Towns and Wiggins weren’t able to lead the team to wins in Butler’s absence, and the Timberwolves’ defense rating was horrendous. That stretch of games could be when Butler started to get frustrated with the two youngsters.
It’s still unclear if Butler will be on the Timberwolves next week when the team opens its season against the San Antonio Spurs. Butler may have returned to practice today just to prove a point.