Thibodeau has been willing to coach the Timberwolves through the dysfunction that has surrounded his star players, but Taylor has sided with Butler and agreed that the four-time All-Star should be away from the Wolves for the foreseeable future, sources said.
However, late in the week it came out Minnesota owner Glen Taylor was not on the same page as Thibodeau.
In the aftermath of Butler's trade request this week, Minnesota executives are telling teams that Butler's an elite player and that the franchise intends to keep him, league sources said.
Butler requested a trade earlier this week, with his preferred destinations reportedly the LA Clippers, New York Knicks and Brooklyn Nets. Taylor is attending the NBA's Board of Governors meetings today in NY, which include owners and top basketball executives.
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It had been a tumultuous team-up for Butler to say the least.
If Butler is not moved by Monday's media day in Minnesota, things could get (even more) messy.
Towns has been at the focal point of the Minnesota offense ever since his debut in the league, earning the 2016 NBA Rookie of the Year Award. Taylor, who was involved with trades surrounding Kevin Garnett and Kevin Love, plans to avoid that. There was clear friction between Butler and Towns - the same friction exists with Andrew Wiggins, but the underachieving Wiggins is a secondary factor in all of this - and that needed to be cleared up. Yesterday, we discussed how waiting for Butler may work in the best interest of the team, especially considering he already said that the Clippers are likely his top choice next summer due to their ability to sign two max contract players.
The team recently signed Luol Deng to a one-year contract for the veteran minimum. Trading for a 29-year-old Butler and paying him $190 million until he's 34 may fall under the category of skipping steps.