Jimmy Butler not with Wolves for final preseason game


Jimmy Butler was not with the Minnesota Timberwolves in Milwaukee on Friday as they prepared for their final game of the NBA preseason.

Wolves coach Tom Thibodeau told reporters after a morning shootaround that Butler remained in Minneapolis to “work on his conditioning.”

Minnesota opens the regular season next Wednesday in San Antonio.

Butler, who has been the subject of trade talks, made a dramatic return to the team on Wednesday, boldly challenging teammates, coaches and front-office executives during the session. Butler then spoke at length with ESPN’s Rachel Nichols, discussing his contentious relationship with the team and coaches.

The Timberwolves canceled practice on Thursday, although Butler told Nichols he did meet with his teammates. He also said said in Wednesday’s interview that the source of his discontent is what he sees as the team’s lack of a commitment to winning.

“I think that’s the part everybody doesn’t see,” Butler said. “I’m not going to say no names. I’m going to be honest, if your No. 1 priority isn’t winning, people can tell. That’s the battle. Now there is a problem between people. That’s where the disconnect is.”

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