Around this time a year ago, Timberwolves guard Jimmy Butler spoke to the media about the importance of the young team playing defense. Now, he reportedly won't be there to speak at all.
It's the latest step in the crumbling relationship between Butler and the Timberwolves. The 29-year-old can opt out of his contract at the end of the season and become an unrestricted free agent. He reportedly wants to join the Los Angeles Clippers, New York Knicks, or Brooklyn Nets.
Timberwolves management has reportedly told interested teams they are not interested in trading Butler. Meanwhile, Timberwolves owner Glen Taylor told his colleagues at the NBA's board of governors meeting that he is open to moving the guard, and that teams should contact Taylor directly, according to ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski.
Butler's absence will help him avoid any awkward questions Monday, but his (soon-to-be-ex?) teammates won't have the same luck. After feuding with retired NBA vet Stephen Jackson on Instagram, Andrew Wiggins surely won't, either.