What dysfunction? It's all roses and butterflies at Target Center and Mayo Clinic Square in Minneapolis, or so says Timberwolves head coach/president Tom Thibodeau.
Thibodeau made the journey to the Minnesota State Fair on Monday and before the storms from the sky hit, he was doing his best to calm the reported storms inside the team's locker room during his interview with KFAN's Dan Barreiro.
"It's never Jimmy [Butler] saying those things, it's always a source close to Jimmy," said Thibodeau, commenting on the series of summer reports that suggest Butler isn't happy with Karl-Anthony Towns and Andrew Wiggins. "I've known Jimmy a long time, if Jimmy has a problem with somebody he goes directly to that person, so I don't buy into any of that stuff."
Thibodeau also tried to calm tensions about Butler turning down a contract extension the Wolves offered, meaning he'll be able to test free agency after the 2018-19 season.
"This is all normal," Thibodeau said, noting that Butler has earned the right to see what he can get in free agency. "Every day we have to show him the reasons why this is the best place for him, and I think we have a lot to offer."
Thibodeau also stressed that the importance of remember that the Wolves won 27 of 37 games against Western Conference opponents when Butler, Towns and Wiggins were all healthy.
After debunking the rumors, Thibodeau said Minnesota's starting lineup last season was "championship caliber," and noted that an improved bench coupled with the "invaluable" experience they gained in the playoffs last season will be huge going forward.