The addition of Jimmy Butler to the Timberwolves in a draft day trade last summer has already paid dividends in Minnesota. After a sluggish start in which the Wolves were stuck on the treadmill of mediocrity, hovering around .500, they have broken free recently winning 10 of their last 13 to get to 27-16 on the season
Butler (along with fellow former Bull Taj Gibson) has brought a calming, veteran presence to the Wolves locker room as well as a commitment to the defensive end. After being one of the NBA’s worst defenses for the first third of the season, Minnesota’s become a league average defensive squad, which is a major improvement.
Most recently, Minnesota has blown out the Cavs and run away from the Thunder in back-to-back games to prove that they are a legitimate contender. After the win over the Thunder, Butler was asked about the defensive effort from the team in the win, and specifically about young star center Karl-Anthony Towns’ effort against Steven Adams. As Butler began to wax poetic about Towns’ improved effort on that end, he fell off course and onto a tangent about how strong Adams is as he seemed to be having flashbacks to a bone-crunching screen set by the Kiwi.
“KAT’s been guarding, you know,” Butler said. “But, that motherf*cker is strong. I’m serious. He hit me with one screen today and I thought my life was over. Seriously. He’s…pffftttt…I don’t know. He’s like from Krypton or something. Seriously. He’s strong, like, I’m gonna call him in here and let him set a screen on you. I’m trying to tell you.”
Butler cannot emphasize how strong Steven Adams is enough and because of the laughs from the media he doesn’t think people are taking him seriously enough and is willing to invite him in to set a screen on them. It is a really funny answer, even if Butler’s not joking in the slightest. Butler isn’t alone in noting Adams’ crazy strength over the years and he’s far from the first or last to still be feeling it after an Adams screen after the game.
The lesson here is to try your hardest in life to never find yourself running into Steven Adams at speed. And that the Wolves are playing better defense now.