Timberwolves’ Tom Thibodeau, Karl-Anthony Towns not addressing Jimmy Butler fiasco
The Minnesota Timberwolves have had one heck of a week, first receiving an ultimatum from their estranged star Jimmy Butler, then having the aforementioned unleash hell in his return to practice, only to compound it by an interview on national TV, followed by a players-only meeting to iron it all out.
President/head coach Tom Thibodeau refused to answer anything Butler related, as did Karl-Anthony Towns, who was heavily targeted during Wednesday’s profanity-laced practice.
“Some of what was reported was true, some of it wasn’t,” said Thibodeau of Wednesday’s practice scandal, according to Dane Moore of 1500 ESPN. “I’m not answering to all the stuff that gets put out there that is garbage.”
Butler was “working on conditioning,” according to Thibodeau, who said the “situation remains fluid” despite the star being slated to miss the Wolves’ last preseason game Friday against the Milwaukee Bucks.
Towns adopted a similar position, refusing to address the Butler situation by saying, “I’m excited for tonight’s game in Milwaukee” whenever he was asked of what went on during this week.
“We had practice. We got better. That’s it,” said Towns.
Towns was later asked if Butler had been too hard on him, one he avoided by simply saying, “we just want to win.”
Teammate Taj Gibson didn’t make much of Wednesday’s one-hour intense scrimmage with Butler, saying he has seen him do this before with him in Chicago and claiming not to have watched his interview with ESPN’s Rachel Nichols, but only seeing highlight clips of it.
There’s surely more to unearth than the eyes let on, reflected by Jeff Teague’s efforts to deny the reported (and corroborated) players-only meeting that took place on Thursday after the Wolves canceled practice. Thibodeau’s silence is to be expected, but the players following suit is only a sign that the organization is trying to reel in the secrets before everything explodes before the start of the regular season.