NBA news: Jimmy Butler still causing issues as trade saga upsets Heat

The Minnesota Timberwolves ace has been heavily linked with a trade to the Florida outfit.

However, the Wolves are said to be setting Butler’s price tag too high and Heat president Pat Riley has pulled the plug on talks.

The Heat look set to stick with their current NBA roster and players have been informed.

But in a twist, it appears Riley didn’t rule out trading them for Butler in the future.

Miami based journalist Ira Winderman tweeted: “Heat confirm that Pat Riley addressed his players about Jimmy Butler trade rumours and told them, ‘I’m pulling the plug.’

“But he did not tell them anything about standing by his young players. Rather, made them aware of process.”

Goran Dragic admitted he was relieved following Riley’s intervention.

The talented point guard could have been pushed out if Butler had arrived.

“It calms you down, for sure, a little bit,” Dragic said.

“Of course, everybody is talking, including me. I just want to focus on my job. But deep down, it affects you a little bit.

“I want to stay here. I like it, really.

“So when Pat came after practice and sat us down and we had a small meeting, he told us that and you can feel a little bit of relief.

“But that doesn’t mean, in the near future it can’t happen. So we still need to do our job. We still need to be professionals.”

Butler caused chaos after returning to training before the new season.

ESPN claimed Butler was ‘vociferous and intense’ during scrimmage sessions and targeted Timberwolves president of basketball operations and coach Tom Thibodeau, general manager Scott Layden and team-mates, including Karl-Anthony Towns and Andrew Wiggins.

The report says Butler told Layden at one point: “You f***ing need me, Scott.

“You can’t win without me.”

It is claimed Butler’s team-mates were left baffled by his behaviour.

When quizzed about his outburst by ESPN afterwards, Butler said: “I think that I was honest.

“Was I brutally honest?

“Yes. But I think that that’s the problem.

“Everybody’s so scared to be honest with one another.

“If you didn’t like the way I handled myself in practice, one of the players come up to me.

“Somebody say something, anybody.

“I’m not gonna take it as offense, it’s not personal. ‘Jimmy, you shouldn’t have done that.’ ‘Yeah, you probably right,’ and I would’ve said, ‘I ain’t hooped in I don’t know how long. I’m passionate about it. I love the game and I love to win.’

“And that’s all I was out there doing.

“I went into practice today and I competed.”

When pushed on what he said, Butler replied: “I can’t remember exactly.”