The Timberrrrrrr-wolves Have Fallen
Jimmy Butler made a bold return to practice Wednesday morning, after demanding a trade three weeks ago. The All-Star guard came in hot, challenging everyone from front-office execs to the starting five. He ended a disruptive practice by pairing up with the third stringers and then wiped the floor with the regulars in a scrimmage, while talking smack with every dribble he took.
After Butler served a cold dish of revenge to the entire organization, he proceeded to take an interview with Rachel Nichols, who he personally invited to practice before it began -- and that's how you flex on your team.
Now 5 days away from the opening day of the NBA, Minnesota responds to Butler's actions by cancelling Thursday's practice, giving up all leverage they may have once held. Rather than banning the disorderly All-Star from practice, and figuring out ways they can move forward without him on the hardwood, they show more vulnerability and fold.
Yahoo Sports was able to capture video footage of Butler's outburst in Wednesday's practice.
Maybe JB is right, Minnesota doesn't know what it takes to win. On paper, they boast one of the strongest rosters in the league. However, Jimmy has consistently put KAT and Wiggins on blast, questioning their lack of motivation and effort, while simultaneously questioning the front office for paying those two max contracts and leaving Jimmy with the crumbs.
Where's Jimmy's bag at Scott?!
He's not wrong, KAT is the most talented, Wiggs would be the best basketball player in the world if no one else cared or trained so hard like they're some professional athlete, and Butler works his tail off harder than anyone else.
They all play with different passions, though. Wiggins was destroying rec center rims in Toronto before he was in high school. Likely due to his father who was in the NBA and his mother who is a 21-time NCAA All-American sprinter, winning 2 medals with Canada at the 1984 Olympics. Wiggins was the face of basketball since he was a sophomore, leading his Vaughn High School to a 44–1 record, en route to winning the Ontario provincial championship. In the championship game, he scored 25 points and grabbed 13 rebounds, amid chants of "Over-rated!" from the crowd. He would later transfer to the US and became the first Canadian ever to win "Mr. Basketball USA" and the second Canadian ever to get drafted first overall in the NBA.
Karl Anthony Towns shares a similar pedigree to Wiggy. Several state championships and high-school accolades, before moving on and becoming the first-overall-pick of the 2015 NBA draft.
JB, however, spent most of his childhood homeless, bouncing around from couch to couch in Houston, with the only stability and comfort coming from a basketball court. He was not a top-rated high-school prospect, did a year in junior college before earning a spot on Marquette University, and grinded his way to the Bulls roster after being drafted 30th overall. It's evident, Jimmy knows what hard work is and so does the people he surrounds himself with.
This dumpster fire in Minnesota became a family affair three weeks ago. Since Wiggins has been a primary target for Butler's verbal attacks, older brother Nick Wiggins publicly voiced his opinion on the matter.
This was followed by Jimmy Butler posting workouts (probably at 5 am with Marky Mark) on Insta saying "Hallelujah, keep that same energy."
Then Stephen Jackson got involved with his own Instagram video skit, playing the characters of both Andrew and Nick Wiggins, with a script that ultimately had Andrew admitting he has no heart and telling his older brother to not tweet those things.
Nick caught wind of this and slid right into the comments.
That one had to cut deep for Nick. I even felt it.
Also, replacing C's with K's like Jackson did with the word Klown, is usually code for a member of the Bloods. Maybe retirement is rougher than he portrays and it's back to gang banging to make ends meet.
But after that, Andrew could no longer bite his tongue and it was off to the Insta stories.
Jackson had the final word, telling Wiggins “You got a lot of talent. I hope you have a good year. I hope somewhere you can find some heart and find some passion for the game and have a good year. I really wish you the best,” he says. Jackson talks more before reminding Wiggins, “Make sure your energy is straight when you see me, bruh. I’m pretty sure you know who I am.”
This was followed up by SJ posting his season stats of every year he played with the caption "Kold ass bum with a chip. Crickets you shall hear." Failing to replace the other 2 C's in that caption with a K.
If that's not the most NBA thing you've heard then I am not sure what is.
When practice got cancelled, Butler held a players only meeting. Not sure how it panned out, but I'd like to imagine he stormed into the facility and just said to everyone "CONFERENCE ROOM, FIVE MINUTES!!"
Either way, the ball is in Jimmys' court now.