Jimmy Butler And His Agent Refute Reports An Extended Absence Is On The Horizon

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Jimmy Butler won’t be playing against the Utah Jazz tonight, but he is adamant that it is not the beginning of an extended absence or part of an effort to force Minnesota to acquiesce to his trade request.

Per Butler’s camp and a report from ESPN’s Rachel Nichols, the guard has been experiencing “general soreness” as a result of not playing in training camp, and he wants to prevent this soreness from elevating into something more serious. Butler presumably wishes to finish this season healthy to earn a maximum contract in the offseason, when he will likely opt out of the final year of his existing deal.

Adrian Wojnarowski confirmed that Butler is traveling with the Timberwolves to Golden State as they begin a Pacific coast road trip. He is projected to play Friday against the Warriors, and on The Jump, Woj expressed his belief that Butler will also play both Los Angeles teams next week.

“Jimmy Butler’s plan is to play Golden state, I’m told,” Wojnarowski said earlier today. “They play twice in L.A. next week, and in talking to people around him, those are games he loves. The stage of playing the Lakers… the Clippers are a team that are at the very top of his preferred destination list.”

According to Woj, Butler is expected to periodically miss games throughout the season as scheduled rest. Tonight’s absence against the Jazz is simply part of the plan.