Timberwolves G Jimmy Butler reportedly has a new top trade destination in the Miami Heat, according to the New York Times' Marc Stein.
Of the many teams that have reached out to Minnesota on the All-Star, Stein says the Heat have been the most aggressive. But they don't seem to know what exactly the T-Wolves want to do still.
Butler, who listed the Knicks as a potential trade destination originally, is a $18.6 million cap hit to whatever team he lands on if he is traded. For the Heat, that would be a problem given their status as the team with the highest payroll for the 2018-19 season at $158,327,046. They would have to trade some of their top contracts in order to get Butler on the team.
As for the Knicks, they have made it known that they won't jeopardize their rebuilding strategy to land a player like Butler, who could easily be signed in free agency if he elects to decline his player option following this year.
"We're not going to take shortcuts," Mills said Monday night at a town hall, according to The Athletic. "We're not going to trade our draft picks. Really, we believe New Yorkers will live with a plan and buy into a plan as long as we articulate it and we live it. I've seen when there's something shiny that says 'OK, let's change direction right now because we can go get this guy.' We're not going to do that. We're going to lay out and stick to that."
The only reason the Knicks would consider Butler is if he would make them win right now. But that wouldn't be the case, especially with F Kristaps Porzingis out indefinitely at the moment.
Also, as Mills stated, trading away draft picks isn't the right thing to do during this rebuild. If experts predict it correctly, the Knicks could see themselves with a Top 10 pick again. And with players like Duke freshmen Zion Williamson, R.J. Barrett, and Cam Reddish as well as UNC's Nassir Little expected to be available, the Knicks would rather test their luck with younger players before thinking about Butler.
It appears, though, the Heat are all-in on bringing on the 29-year-old.