Teams with interest in trading for Minnesota Timberwolves small forward Jimmy Butler have questions about Butler’s locker room style and impact on team chemistry, according to Steve Aschburner of NBA.com.
Butler has requested a trade from Minnesota after spending just one season there. He clashed with big man Karl-Anthony Towns and swingman Andrew Wiggins throughout the 2017-18 season.
There were teams that had questions about Butler’s locker-room style and impact on chemistry the first time he was traded, per league source. This Minnesota episode raises more. https://t.co/A3FU5YUAya
— Steve Aschburner (@AschNBA) September 23, 2018
Jimmy Butler is not an easy guy to get along with and has a history of causing locker room issues. When he was on the Chicago Bulls, Butler had documented beef with former MVP Derrick Rose and Joakim Noah. During the 2015-16 season, Butler and Noah had multiple disputes and had to be separated in the locker room many times.
Then, in the 2016-17 season, Butler’s rep took an even bigger hit after he and Dwyane Wade called out the young guys on the Bulls after the team suffered an epic collapse at home to the Atlanta Hawks. Butler and Wade were benched in the next game.
In his last two years in Chicago, Butler had a rocky relationship with head coach Fred Hoiberg. Butler called out Hoiberg through the Chicago media, telling reporters, “Coach has to coach us harder.” A few years ago, former NBA player Antoine Walker called Butler a “bad locker room guy” and said the former Marquette product rubs a lot of his teammates the wrong way.
Everyone knows what Butler can do on the court. He’s a four-time All-Star, has averaged at least 20 points per game four years in a row, and is a great defender. But his leadership style isn’t for everyone, and it appears some teams aren’t willing to acquire the 6-foot-7 forward knowing he can be a locker room cancer at some point.