Jimmy Butler on trade rumors: ‘I don’t plan on going anywhere’
Despite trade rumors swirling around him amid the Chicago Bulls’ frantic attempt to qualify for the postseason, Jimmy Butler says as far as he concerned, he hopes to remain with the team.
Butler was being interviewed after the Bulls’ 103-100 win over the Houston Rockets — a victory that brought the team within one game of the current eight-seed Indiana Pacers — when he expressed his desire to stay.
“That’s why I’m here,” Butler told ESPN.com. “I don’t plan on going anywhere. I can’t control what everybody else does. I know that this is the city that I love, Chicago. And I want to wear that jersey. I want to wear that name on the front, and I wear it proudly. All I got to do is continue to control what I can control. That’s try to help this team win games.”
Butler signed a five-year, $95 million contract last summer, leading to the assumption that he may serve as the centerpiece for the Bulls roster going forward, perhaps even over Derrick Rose.
But a disappointing season has led to rumors that the Bulls squad in its current incarnation may scarcely resemble what will be on the court come next fall.
Butler’s name has been at the center of those rumors, with the belief he potentially could be dealt after the Bulls reassess the status of the organization, something that would presumably lead to a dramatic overhaul of the roster.
But Butler insists he pays no mind to such speculation, including those that report the Boston Celtics and Orlando Magic could come calling during the upcoming offseason.
“To tell you the truth, I don’t pay attention to the rumors,” Butler said.
Throughout the Bulls’ lackluster run through the regular season, Butler has been both critical of the team’s play and his own performance at points as well. He did nevertheless express a belief the team can still pull through and qualify for the playoffs.
Either way, everything he’s saying seems to indicate he’s committed to making it work in Chicago for the long haul.
And if the Bulls do somehow manage to sneak into the postseason and enjoy some success? Perhaps all the rumors will prove inconsequential.