If you haven’t heard the latest buzz surrounding Jimmy Butler, then let me fill you in. As of this week, the Timberwolves, Suns, Cavs and Celtics all appear to be interested in acquiring the star guard. According to Scott Polacek of Bleacher Report, all of this teams are currently exploring trade options for Butler.
Most recently, the All-Star guard has come out and said that he wouldn’t mind leaving Chicago for Cleveland. He would love to play with Kyrie Irving and has had conversations with Irving and LeBron earlier this week about teaming up. Now, like most trades often are to get great value, you have to be willing to part with great value in return.
So, we are going to breakdown what this deal would look like on paper and why each team involved should go this route.
So, what’s the trade?
According to Kristian Winfield of SBNation, it would have to include a third team other than the Cavs and Bulls willing to tango to get this deal into motion. Kristian explains, “The Cavaliers reportedly worked on Monday to add a third team to the deal to give Chicago the necessary assets needed to pry the two-way wing from the Bulls.”
The Chicago Tribune’s K.C. Johnson reported thePhoenix Suns are a possibility as the third team needed to complete the deal. The working thought includes the Cavaliers shipping All-Star forward Kevin Love to the Suns, while Phoenix sends a mix of young players and future picks to the Bulls, who ship Butler to Cleveland.
The trade may look something like this:
Cavs Receive: Jimmy Butler
Bulls Receive: Eric Bledsoe, Brandon Knight, TJ Warren, and 4th pick in 2017 draft
Suns Receive: Kevin Love
How Each Team Benefits?
First off, the Cleveland Cavaliers would get a defensive stopper in Jimmy Butler that has the versatility to guard up to 3 positions. Takes the weight off a defensive liability in Irving to have to chase Curry all around the court. A Butler Trade would help Cleveland’s front office show LeBron that they are willing to make the necessary moves to compete with the juggernaut of the super team, that is the Golden State Warriors. Dan Gilbert is currently under heavy scrutiny for firing David Griffin from the General Manager’s spot. This would help to ensure that LeBron retires in Cleveland and that Kyrie is happy too. This isn’t a forced deal either. Jimmy Butler is hoping to land here.
Meanwhile, the Chicago Bulls would assemble a group that has long term upside. A backcourt of Bledsoe and Wade would be a tough matchup for any team. Chicago loves explosive point guards. Who’s to say, Bledsoe can’t play similar to the D-Rose of old. They don’t call him, “Mini-LeBron” for nothing. Rondo and Brandon Knight would make a great backcourt to lead their second unit. Add young players with great upside such as Bobby Portis, TJ Warren, and maybe another stud in the draft. This team may not win right away but they will be much more entertaining than the Bulls have been in the last few years. The Bulls organization can show their fans that there is some type of a direction.
Lastly, Phoenix would assemble an amazing 1-2 punch with Devin Booker and Kevin Love. Pair those two along with the development of players such as Tyler Ulis, Marquese Chriss, and Dragan Bender. This trade would finally allow the Suns to play their young guns for 30+ minutes a night. It would solve the current log jam at the guard spot.
The Suns also have veteran pieces such as Jared Dudley, Leandro Barbosa, and Tyson Chandler that can help mentor this young pieces moving forward. Not to mention what they’d be getting from acquiring a top tier power forward in Kevin Love. A 20-10 guy that is a light out shooter from beyond the arc and knows what it takes to win at the NBA level after three straight finals appearances with Cleveland. It would be the ideal mix of youngsters and veterans that will win you ball games long after Cleveland and Golden State finish their tango at the top.
According to the Bleacher Report, Jimmy Butler wants to stay with the Chicago Bulls, but we are in the middle of trade rumors, so anything can happen in the next few hours or in the NBA Draft night.
The Cleveland Cavaliers are still "seriously interested" in trading for Jimmy Butler, but the Chicago Bulls swingman would reportedly prefer to stay in the Windy City with two guaranteed years left on his contract.
Citing sources, ESPN.com's Marc Stein reported Tuesday "the Cavaliers have been notified that Butler hopes to stay with the Bulls and would be reluctant to commit his long-term future to Cleveland."
CSN Chicago's Vincent Goodwill first reported Tuesday that Butler "has made it known he wants to stay in Chicago and doesn't want to be moved" even though the Bulls are actively shopping him in advance of Thursday's draft.