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Jimmy Butler promises that he'll be back before the end of the season

Minnesota is down to 11 games left in the regular season.

Jimmy Butler's season is not over. 

The All-Star swingman told reporters Sunday that he'll be back "sooner rather than later." 

“Oh yeah, oh yeah, I plan on doing it,” Butler said when asked on if he can return by the playoffs. “I can’t give you the exact date, but I want to come back and I want to help. I want to play.”

Butler's been rehabbing with an underwater treadmill, among other tactics, since undergoing surgery to repair a torn meniscus on Feb. 25. He suffered the injury Feb. 23 against the Rockets. 

"I’m not one to sit out if I can play. I want to compete, I want to show that I’m one of the better players to do this, I’m here for a reason, I want to help my team win, all that good stuff," Butler said, while warning that he's not going to come back until he's capable of going full speed. 

"But I can’t come back early cause something worse might happen."

Minnesota is 4-4 without Butler, and playing .500 over the final 11 games of the season probably won't be good enough to get into the playoffs. Prior to Sunday's game against the Rockets they were sixth in the Western Conference standings, but just a sliver from falling out of the top 8.

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