Timberwolves have the best defensive rating in the NBA since the Jimmy Butler trade
Both the Minnesota Timberwolves and Philadelphia 76ers are 6-2 since the Jimmy Butler trade. However, the Timberwolves have been much better on the defensive side of the ball since parting ways with Butler.
Per NBA.com, the Timberwolves are tied with the Dallas Mavericks for the best defensive rating in the league over the last eight games (101.0). The Sixers, meanwhile, are at 113.4, which puts them at 25th in the NBA. Defensive rating is points allowed per 100 possessions.
At the end of the day, wins are wins, but the Sixers’ defense hasn’t looked good since the arrival of Jimmy Butler, which is somewhat surprising given Butler is a good defender. The Timberwolves, meanwhile, are benefiting from the addition of small forward Robert Covington, who is a cerebral defender and low maintenance player unlike Butler. Covington is averaging 3.0 steals per game in seven games with the Timberwolves.
The Timberwolves have defeated the New Orleans Pelicans, Portland Trail Blazers, Brooklyn Nets twice, Chicago Bulls and Cleveland Cavaliers since trading Butler. They have lost to the Denver Nuggets and Memphis Grizzlies. Minnesota is giving up an average of 100.6 points per game during the last eight games.
Since acquiring Jimmy Butler, the Sixers have defeated the Miami Heat, Utah Jazz, Charlotte Hornets, Phoenix Suns, New Orleans Pelicans and Brooklyn Nets. They have lost to the Orlando Magic and Cleveland Cavaliers. In the last eight games, Philadelphia is giving up 116.4 points per game.