Jim Butler Traded for Blockbuster Deal in Timberwolves

Jim Butler Traded for Blockbuster Deal in Timberwolves”

Also going to Minnesota are the rights to Justin Patton, who was picked at No. 16 by the Bulls.

In the blockbuster move of draft night, the Bulls traded Butler and the 16th overall pick Thursday night to the Timberwolves for Zach LaVine, Kris Dunn and the No. 7 overall pick as the Wolves try to finally put an end to a 13-year playoff drought.

The 7-foot Markkanen gives the Bulls a shooter they lacked last season.

Paired up with Wade, Butler had another dominant season previous year, averaging 23.9 points and 6.2 rebounds per game as he made yet another All-Star Game appearance for the team. And he has little doubt his shot will translate to the National Basketball Association.

"I'm really honored to be part of this organization, and can't wait to go there and do what I can", said Markkanen, who spent his lone college season at Arizona.

"Being in different situations in my life, coming from Eugene to Germany then to Lithuania really helped me mature as a player and as a person and I think I was really ready for this step", said Hartenstein, who went No. 43 to Houston.

Thibodeau and Butler were together in Chicago for four seasons before the former was shown the door. Instead, the Bulls gambled by trading away one of the league's best two-way players and their most successful draft pick in recent memory. He joined the Timberwolves last season with the dual title of coach and head of basketball operations.

Let's dive in and see which teams have enough and can offer the Bulls a deal if one were to take place centered around acquiring Butler. The two sides engaged on serious discussions on draft night past year, but couldn't close it. This time, they made it happen.

The trade brings together Butler and Wolves coach and president Thibodeau, who coached the Bulls for five seasons before being fired in 2015. He played one season only with an average of two three-pointers per game. They were rumored to offer Kevin Love to a third team that would supply them with younger trade assets and good draft picks that could have been enticing for the Chicago Bulls to send Butler out to the Cavs.

And the rumored players on the move - Chicago's Jimmy Butler, Indiana's Paul George and most recently, New York's Kristaps Porzingis - have all been tied to the Celtics in some fashion.

Chicago ranked 23rd in scoring and 24th in 3-point accuracy last season. That told me a lot about him. I know he wants to win.

The addition of Markkanen - a scoring force on the perimeter and in the post for Arizona - raises questions about the future of Nikola Mirotic in Chicago.

Butler averaged career highs in points (23.9), rebounds (6.2) and assists (5.5) in his sixth season. His season ended on February 3, when he crashed to the court clutching his left knee in a collision with Detroit's Andre Drummond.

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