Jimmy Butler's trainer, Travelle Gaines, had some choice words for Chicago Bulls general manager Gar Forman on Thursday night in the aftermath of a trade that sent the All-Star swingman to the Minnesota Timberwolves in exchange for Zach LaVine, Kris Dunn and Lauri Markkanen.
In a post on Twitter, Gaines said he's "met drug dealers with better morals" than Forman, while accusing him of being a liar:
Butler and the Bulls front office didn't see eye to eye during his time in the Windy City, and a February report from ESPN's Ryen Russillo shed light on the discord that had developed over the years.
According to Russillo (h/t NBC Sports' Dan Feldman), one member of Bulls management threatened to bench Butler in favor of Tony Snell if he didn't accept the team-friendly terms of a proposed contract extension:
"What I was told is — and I don’t know who it was in the front office; I don’t have a name — but that he was told, 'Well, if you don’t take this, we’re going to play Tony Snell your minutes. We’re going to play Tony Snell over you, and then good luck trying to get this kind of money when your number sare down. And that, if it’s true — and it’s what I was told, and I believe it, but it’s the same thing of any gossipy industry that you’re in — then it doesn’t make sense that Jimmy Butler can’t stand the front office and loves Thibs, because Thibs apparently went, 'No, I’m not playing Tony Snell over Jimmy Butler. Are you freaking kidding me?'"
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Butler, it should be noted, did not offer a flat denial of that account.
"I'll tell it to you like this," he said, according to CSN Chicago's Vincent Goodwill. "That s--t happened so long ago I didn't think it was a matter of anything. We went into contract negotiations. I said I would hoop and play the year out. I did that, had a little decent year. We won't go into detail about what was said, what wasn't said, it's not anybody's business."
Now that his time in Chicago has come to an end, Butler will reunite with head coach Tom Thibodeau in Minnesota and join a lineup that also features Karl-Anthony Towns and Andrew Wiggins.
If those three can mesh in expedient fashion, the Timberwolves should threaten to crack the postseason picture for the first time since 2004.