Jimmy Butler and Minnesota Timberwolves finally ended their estranged relationship on Saturday. Butler is on his way to Philadelphia 76ers.
Per Shams Charania of The Athletic and Stadium, the Sixers will send Robert Covington, Dario Saric, and Jerryd Bayless to Minnesota for Butler.
Per Wojnarowski, the 76ers made the deal with the intention of finding a third star to play with Joel Embiid and Ben Simmons and are expected to reach an agreement with Butler on a long-term contract extension this summer.
This is a major statement by the Sixers and it’s the first splashy move by their new general manager, Elton Brand. The Sixers sit at 7-5 this season. They haven’t played their best basketball. They’re hoping that Butler’s talent and competitive fire can help lift this team to new heights. Brett Brown has three superstars to work with. In addition to Butler, Embiid and Simmons are approaching superstar levels in their own right.
The Wolves lose Butler but get Covington — a two-way guy on a great contract who doesn’t need the ball to be effective — and Saric, a young, versatile stretch four who should complement Karl-Anthony Towns well.
The Eastern Conference doesn’t look nearly as bad as it did prior to the season. The Sixers are now a force to be reckoned with. Not to mention, the Raptors, Celtics, and Bucks all look poised to battle it out for a trip to the NBA Finals.