Cavaliers among those pursuing Timberwolves star Butler

Star swingman Jimmy Butler remains a member of the Timberwolves ... for now.

The Cavaliers have emerged as another potential suitor for Minnesota Timberwolves star swingman Jimmy Butler, according to Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN, and sources told Amico Hoops the Cavaliers are “highly interested” in acquiring the four-time All-Star.

Wojnarowski reports Cavaliers owner Dan Gilbert and Timberwolves owner Glen Taylor “played a part” in the blockbuster deal that sent Kevin Love to Cleveland in exchange for Andrew Wiggins and Anthony Bennett to Minnesota in the summer of 2014 and that Gilbert and Taylor were spotted talking privately at the NBA Board off Governors meeting Friday.

The Cavaliers were linked to Butler last summer, too. In fact, Jeff Zillgitt of USA Today reported Cleveland was in play to acquire Butler, but the departures of general manager David Griffin and vice president of basketball operations Trent Redden played a major part in it not coming to fruition.

Further exacerbating (LeBron) James’ frustration is the Cavs were close to making a deal for then-Chicago Bulls All-Star Jimmy Butler the day Gilbert decided to mutually part ways with Griffin and Redden, two people familiar with negotiations told USA TODAY Sports. They requested anonymity because they were not authorized to speak publicly on the negotiations.

Butler was eventually traded to the Timberwolves from the Chicago Bulls on draft day in June 2017. He averaged 22.2 points and 5.3 rebounds in 59 games during his first season in Minnesota.

Though no specifics of a potential deal between Cleveland and Minnesota have been mentioned, if the Cavaliers would be willing to also take center Gorgui Dieng, who is owed $48.5 million over the next three seasons, as part of a potential swap it could be a deal sweetener. Love, by the way, cannot be traded until January after signing a four-year, $120 million extension with Cleveland on July 24.

Butler informed the Timberwolves last week that he is seeking a trade. Taylor is determined to grant Butler his wish, according to multiple reports.

The 29-year-old swingman turned down an offer of a four-year contract extension from the Timberwolves earlier this offseason, leading to speculation that he may want to move on. He will become a free agent in 2019 barring an extension from another team.

While interest in Butler is supposedly high, one opposing GM told Amico Hoops he wouldn’t be making a call on Butler. “He’s a problem,” the GM said. (Full story.)

The Houston Rockets and Philadelphia 76ers are among the teams interested in trading for Minnesota Timberwolves star swingman Jimmy Butler, according to a report from ESPN. Per the report, the Detroit Pistons, Brooklyn Nets, Los Angeles Clippers and Miami Heat are some of the other teams interested.

2 Comments on "Cavaliers among those pursuing Timberwolves star Butler"

  1. Could be an interesting move for the Cavs. I wonder what the Wolves would be asking for especially if they want to offload Dieng’s contract too. JR, Hill, TT and KK would have to be on the block. The younger guys I would think should be untouchable, especially Sexton and Osman, Nance and Zizic even Hood. Would love to add Jimmy Butler though.

  2. How would that work? 1 year rental? For who and what picks?

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