Butler notched 15 points (3-6 FG, 0-1 3Pt, 9-10 FT), five rebounds, six assists, two steals and one turnover across 29 minutes during Sunday's preseason loss to the Warriors.
Butler made a living at the free-throw line Sunday, with nine of his 15 total points coming as freebies. After a final season in Chicago where he was the main playmaker, Butler's offensive responsibilities will likely decline a bit with Minnesota, though he'll still bring a much-needed defensive presence and should be a solid fantasy pick due to his ability to contribute in multiple categories. It also certainly doesn't hurt that he's playing for coach Tom Thibodeau, who is known for playing his starters big minutes on most nights.
Butler collected 16 points (4-6 FG, 0-2 3Pt, 8-9 FT), five rebounds and four assists across 26 minutes in Wednesday's preseason game against the Warriors.
Butler seems to be ramping things up after only playing 12 minutes Saturday in his first game for Minnesota, albeit an exhibition game. Now that the 28-year-old has reunited with coach Tom Thibodeau, expect him to be given heavy minutes during the regular season, considering Butler averaged 38.7 minutes in their last two seasons together in Chicago.
Butler started at small forward and scored ten points with three rebounds and two assists in 12 minutes in Saturday's preseason win over the Lakers.
Butler played just the first quarter in his Minnesota debut, but he's set to get significant minutes and it looks like he'll play small forward with Andrew Wiggins starting at shooting guard, at least if the first preseason game is any indication.
Butler and the Bulls' No. 16 pick were traded to the Timberwolves during Thursday's NBA Draft in exchange for the Timberwolves' No. 7 pick, Zach LaVine, and Kris Dunn, K.C. Johnson of the Chicago Tribune reports.
A similar trade was tossed around almost exactly a year ago during the 2016 NBA Draft, but this time around it's legit, as Butler will reunite with his former coach, Tom Thibodeau. Butler has averaged at least 36.9 minutes over each of the last four seasons and that trend will likely continue since Thibodeau generally leaves his best players on the court for hefty amounts of time, even during the regular season. It's not immediately clear where exactly Butler and Andrew Wiggins will line up on the court, whether at shooting guard or small forward, but both players will seemingly float around each of those positions as they also split play-making responsibilities with Karl-Anthony Towns.
Butler collected 23 points (9-17 FG, 0-2 3Pt, 5-5 FT), seven rebounds and three steals across 31 minutes in Friday's 105-83 loss to the Celtics in Game 6.
Butler was dealing with knee soreness coming into Game 6, but it didn't seem to affect him too much as he had to pick up the slack for the rest of his struggling team. Robin Lopez was the only other player on the team to score double-digit points, and after leading 2-0, the Bulls are sent packing with four straight losses to the one-seeded Celtics and their phenomenal defense. Butler wasn't great shooting in this series, but compared to the rest of the team, he was easily the best player on the court for them, which speaks to their early playoff exit.
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