How Jimmy Butler to the Heat can still happen

FILE - In this April 21, 2018, file photo, Minnesota Timberwolves' Jimmy Butler plays against the Houston Rockets in the first half during Game 3 of an NBA basketball first round playoff series in Minneapolis. With Butler's trade demand swirling like a dark cloud around coach Tom Thibodeau, newly minted super-max player Karl-Anthony Towns and the Timberwolves arrive for training camp. (AP Photo/Jim Mone, File)

So is Jimmy Butler still leaving Minnesota? And is he still wanting a trade to the Miami Heat? Well, to answer the last question first, yes, he still wants a trade to the Heat, in fact, he reiterated as much to sneaky Tom Thibodeau this week. But will it happen? That is the more complicated question.

According to reports, this trade almost went down over the weekend while we were all consumed with football, the T-Wolves and Heat almost pulled a fast one on us. But apparently, Minnesota and dirty Thibs changed the price on Miami at the last second, prompting one Heat exec to say that the Timberwolves were asking for “all of their firstborns.” Sounds like negotiations got a little out of hand there.

But the fact of the matter is that Miami still sits atop the wish list of Butler and he is not backing down from his request any time soon. And for Miami, this trade is the only way they can get a superstar in the near future given that they are hopelessly over the cap for this year and next, trading away players would be the only way to rectify that.

It would also allow Miami to have the Bird rights to Butler, which is just the fancy way of saying that they will have the right to go over the salary cap next year in order to sign him to a max contract when he hits free agency. But the question still remains, what are the Heat willing to give up to get Butler?

Well, according to the rumors, the T-Wolves want Josh Richardson, Bam Adebayo, and a conditional first-round pick in next years draft. There is no word on whether that is the deal they had agreed to in principal over the weekend before Minnesota got greedy, but it begs the question, should they even agree to that deal?

It’s a tough question to answer in a short article here, but I will just say this. In Riley I trust.

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