As Tom Thibodeau’s plan disintegrated, owner Glen Taylor lost his last remnants of belief in this crumbling regime. Taylor had delivered Thibodeau a long and rich contract as the Minnesota Timberwolves president and coach, control of basketball operations and the trust to be a steward of a franchise forever in disrepair.
Taylor’s judgment has been perpetually suspect, from a secret Joe Smith deal that cost Minnesota draft picks to wasting Kevin Garnett’s prime to the David Kahn catastrophe. In getting things wrong, Taylor has been spectacular in his mishaps.
In the end, Taylor didn’t sign off on a Jimmy Butler trade as much as he surrendered to one of the most embarrassing episodes in franchise history.cheap nike nfl jerseys from china
Thibodeau sold Taylor on trading a starry young core and a high lottery pick to Chicago for Butler on draft night in 2017, sold him on waiting out Butler’s preseason trade demand for two months.
He sold him a strategy of publicly excusing Butler’s disruptive behavior, compromising his own credibility within his locker room, because Thibodeau believed he could navigate the dysfunction and win games.
Thibodeau sold Taylor on passing on a strong Miami trade package, because he was sure Pat Riley would come back with a better offer, and the league would chase in a bidding frenzy for Butler.
Taylor kept doubling down, and when he hung up the phone with Philadelphia owner Josh Harris on Saturday morning, Minnesota had lost everything — the four-time All-Star in his prime, the trade standoff, and ultimately, the trust to stay with Thibodeau and GM Scott Layden beyond this season.
Even at the expense of sullying his professional standing, Butler played them all in Minnesota — and shamed the Timberwolves into trading him to a big market contender. The Timberwolves couldn’t find a team to bail them out of this debacle, and Thibodeau couldn’t sell Taylor on one more basketball game with Butler in a Timberwolves uniform.
Eventually, Thibodeau had lost hope that he could convince Butler to stay for the long term, but his ego still believed he could coach these Timberwolves into playoff contention before the February trade deadline. He underestimated this saga’s impact on the rest of the team, especially his young max-contract players, as they watched Thibodeau excuse behavior and beg Butler to play games.cheap nfl nike jerseys free shipping
Minnesota desperately tried to cobble together trade offers in the past week, including extensive discussions with New Orleans, league sources said. The Pelicans are limited on tradeable assets, but desperate to find star power to keep Anthony Davis for the long run. The Pelicans wouldn’t include point guard Jrue Holiday in its offer, nor multiple draft picks, league sources said.