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Kevin Garnett doesn’t think Timberwolves’ Jimmy Butler has ‘the juice’ to demand a trade

Kevin Garnett, Jimmy Butler, Timberwolves

Minnesota Timberwolves forward Kevin Garnett let it all loose during a phone interview with Jon Krawczynski of The Athletic, doubting if Jimmy Butler really has the elite caliber power to demand a trade like he did this summer.

The longtime Timberwolves icon noted Minnesota’s front office might be asking for much more than Butler is worth, as Garnett is not quite about Jimmy’s creme de la creme status of the NBA.

“I think both sides are a little delusional,” Garnett said. “I think Jimmy thinks his worth is a little more than what it is. He’s a very good player. I don’t see him on the (Kevin Durant) and LeBron (James) level. But if they are A-plus, he’s definitely A, A-minus.

“I don’t know if he had the power to come out and force a trade like this. He can be disruptive, but I don’t know if he actually had the clout to come out and do that. I don’t know if Jimmy has enough juice to be that.”

Whether he had the clout to do so or not, Butler did request a trade. He did so first shortly after the team’s loss to the Houston Rockets in the postseason, then again a week prior to the start of training camp, only to do it again three more times in conversations with head coach Tom Thibodeau and owner Glen Taylor.

Garnett expressed sympathy for Butler, arguing that he’s only trying to look out for himself with his actions, especially now that he has chosen to return to the team.

“I never want a person like Jimmy, who has a lot of upside and a lot of value and a lot of equity that he’s built for himself, get dismantled or get depreciated because of his actions,” Garnett said. “This is clearly frustration. This is clearly him trying to want something better, at least that’s what you hope, versus it being personal and ego-driven.”

“I’m hopeful he and the Timberwolves can get on the same page and figure it out for the chemistry, which is more important,” Garnett said. “I actually like their team. They have a good team.”

Butler made a scene during his return to practice, but he won’t be with the team on Friday night in Milwaukee.