21 things to know about Jimmy Butler after Sixers-Timberwolves trade
Butler overcame a rough childhood to become one of the NBA's best players.
The Sixers made a blockbuster trade on Saturday, sending Dario Saric, Robert Covington and Jerryd Bayless (along with a 2022 second-round pick) to Minnesota for swingman Jimmy Butler.
Here's what you need to know about the Sixers' new star:
1. Butler was all-NBA third team the last two years. He's been selected to four all-star games and has been second-team all-defense four times.
2. Butler exploded in his fourth season (2014-15) when he averaged 20.0 points for the first time in his career. He made the All-Star team for the first time and won the league's Most Improved Player award.
3. A 6-8 swingman, Butler turned 29 on Sept. 14. His career average is 16.5 points, but he's been over 20 each of the last five years.
Jimmy Butler stats | Sixers schedule
4. Had a major meltdown at a preseason practice last month. Trashed his management and his Timberwolves teammates. A source told the Chicago Sun Times in July that Butler was irate with "the nonchalant attitude of his younger teammates, specifically Karl-Anthony Towns."
5. Twitter: @JimmyButler … Instagram: jimmybutler … Facebook: JimmyButler.
6. Butler is a free agent after this season. He turned down an extension of four years, $110 million to remain in Minnesota. Is in line to get a five-year, $190 million deal from the Sixers next summer.
7. Butler was born in Houston and went to Tomball High School, just outside of Houston.
8. Huge fan of country music, Butler was featured in a music video of Luke Bryan's song "Light it Up."
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9. After a year at Tyler Junior College, he went to Marquette and played three seasons.
10. Had a rough childhood. Butler was kicked out of his house when he was 13. As he recalled in a 2011 ESPN story prior to the NBA draft, Butler's mother said simply, "I don't like the look of you. You gotta go."
11. In that profile, written by Chad Ford, Butler made one request. "Please, I know you're going to write something. I'm just asking you, don't write it in a way that makes people feel sorry for me," he asked. "I hate that. There's nothing to feel sorry about. I love what happened to me. It made me who I am. I'm grateful for the challenges I've faced. Please, don't make them feel sorry for me."
12. Was essentially homeless until his senior year of high school when he met Jordan Leslie, a freshman. He was taken in by Leslie's mother Michelle Lambert.
13. Leslie went on to play wide receiver at BYU. He never played in the NFL, but was in several training camps and on practice squads. The Broncos cut him this August.
14. Butler wasn't taken until the Bulls grabbed him with the 30th pick in 2011. He played six seasons for Chicago, who dealt him to Minnesota for Zach LaVine, Kris Dunn and the 7th pick, which Chicago used on Lauri Markkanen. Big win for the Bulls.
15. Butler won a gold medal in 2016. Deepest he's ever gotten in the NBA playoffs is the second round (twice with Chicago).
16. The Timberwolves were 37-22 when he was in the lineup last season, 10-13 when he was not. Butler missed 17 games last year following meniscus surgery.
17. The Wolves were just 3-7 this season in games played by Butler, who wanted out of Minnesota in a big way.
18. Is good friends with Mark Wahlberg, who played the role of Eagles walk-on Vince Papale in the 2006 movie Invincible.
19. The deal for Butler will be finalized Monday, which means Butler's first game for the Sixers probably won't be until Wednesday at Orlando. His first home game is Friday against Utah.
20. It was reported in October that Houston offered four first-round picks and two injured players (Marquese Chriss and Brandon Knight) for Butler. Miami and others also made a push for him. The Sixers gave up Dario Saric, Robert Covington, Jerryd Bayless and a second-round pick in 2022. Minnesota also gave up 7-footer Justin Patton, who has not played this season because of a foot injury.
21. Career high is 53 points, which he dropped on the Sixers while playing for the Bulls on Jan. 14, 2016. The Sixers starting lineup that night: Nik Stauskas, Ish Smith, Jalil Okafor, JaKarr Sampson and Carl Landry.
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