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Sportress of Blogitude

Jimmy Butler became a changed person due to friendship with Mark Wahlberg?

Just when the Jimmy Butler Saga could not get more absurd, Marky Mark’s name gets thrown into the mix to add a baffling dose of the surreal.

Longtime Star Tribune columnist Patrick Reusse relays that an anonymous Chicago media source cited a developing friendship with actor Mark Wahlberg a few years back prompted a significant change in Butler’s personality, as the then-Bulls player started viewing himself as a huge star.

“The feeling in Chicago was that Butler’s game stopped growing three, four years ago, as his head grew ever larger,” Reusse writes.

Butler and Wahlberg evidently struck up a friendship when the actor was in the Chicago area to film a “Transformers” movie in 2013. The two met when Wahlberg started showing up at the Bulls’ practice facility and began playing pickup games with Butler.

The Minnesota Timberwolves’ handling of the Butler situation has devolved from a debacle into a humiliating circus sideshow, as evidenced by Butler’s antics during the team’s practice on Monday.

Making matters worse, the team appeared to be blindsided by the fact that a prearranged interview with ESPN’s Rachel Nichols would be held immediately after practice, thereby giving the national media would have be in town to heavily chronicle the absurdity.

There cannot be any doubt that Butler orchestrated the spectacle with the intent to embarrass the T-Wolves due in large part to the fact the team has been dragging its feet and not yet capitulated to his trade demands. With that in mind, the Timberwolves arguably can only blame themselves for being ensnared in such a nationally embarrassing situation.

And then there’s the news that the Timberwolves, for no discernible reason outside of an attempt to avoid further humiliation, have canceled Thursday’s practice.

At least the T-Wolves can take solace in the fact that apparently Mark Wahlberg’s friendship with Butler can serve in some capacity as a scapegoat behind how their disgruntled star has transformed this bad situation into an utter disaster. Or something.

Again, Mark Wahlberg. You can’t make this stuff up.