Maybe the reason Butler didn't list the Lakers on his preferred destinations because he, too, knew how unrealistic it was, or maybe he actually doesn't want to play second fiddle to James, as reports have suggested.
If Butler is traded now, he could sign a five-year, maximum contract that could be worth $190 million with the team he lands with. Other teams would see that the faint chance of Butler and Thibodeau working out a truce was truly out the window, taking away what little leverage the Wolves had to begin with. Now the most prominent player of the group wants out.
"Also: As the case with past trades involving Minnesota stars Kevin Garnett and Kevin Love, owner Glen Taylor will be a major part of the process on deciding whether to move Butler this season".
Butler, 29, prefers a trade to the LA Clippers, and has a strong interest with the New York Knicks as well as an interest with the Brooklyn Nets, league sources said. He was traded to the Timberwolves before last season.
Recent reports cite that Butler and Karl-Anthony Towns do not get along and the latter won't agree to a contract extension until Butler is gone. This would remove leverage from the Timberwolves, giving Butler more power.
It's unclear whether the Wolves have signed off on Butler's camp holdout.