Minnesota Timberwolves owner Glen Taylor says head coach/president Tom Thibodeau’s job is safe despite the ongoing Jimmy Butler saga.
Butler reportedly told Thibodeau four days after the Timberwolves were eliminated from the 2018 playoffs by the Houston Rockets that he wanted out of Minnesota. Thibodeau, however, didn’t take any action and was intent on keeping the four-time All-Star on the roster.
In a wide-ranging interview with Sid Hartman of The Star Tribune, Glen Taylor says he’s fine with the way Tom Thibodeau has handled Butler’s trade request despite what has been reported.
“Well, I’m OK with it,” Taylor said. “Initially, when Butler told [Thibodeau] he wanted to leave, you know Tom did everything he could to try to keep Jimmy here and I understand that. They have a close relationship.
“Thibs brought him here so that he would stay here. But eventually I think that in listening to Jimmy, Thibs and I are lined up on this. We need to be looking at a trade. He is a good coach and I have faith in him. The only thing now is that we are starting to play games and I am asking him to concentrate on coaching. GM Scott Layden will help to see if any trades are available.”
Tom Thibodeau has three years left on the five-year contract he signed in 2016, and is owed close to $40 million. The Timberwolves made the playoffs last season for the first time in 14 years. Butler reportedly has issues with Andrew Wiggins and Karl-Anthony Towns. Taylor plans to honor Butler’s trade request, although a timetable is unknown.