Sportress of Blogitude

Jimmy Butler voices support for Markelle Fultz: ‘I love having him around’

To say Markelle Fultz’s future with the Philadelphia 76ers is at an extremely uncertain spot would be a huge understatement. Rumors are circulating that the Sixers may be exploring trade options for the second-year player. Further, Fultz is said is open to a “fresh start” with another team.

Jimmy Butler on Tuesday weighed in on the Fultz situation, relaying that the team is ignoring all the “outside noise” while remaining in full support of their teammate.

“I just want Markelle to know that he got everybody in his corner here,” Butler said. “We want him to be great. We want him to continue to work. All the outside noise is what it is, just noise. I love having him around. Everyone here loves having him around.”

Fultz’s first season-plus with the 76ers have been a huge and often baffling disappointment. The much-maligned 20-year-old is presently away from the team to have his shoulder examined in New York, a process that has been extended into Wednesday, per a report from ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski.

League sources reportedly have added that no decisions will be made on Fultz’s future until later in the week at the earliest. Meanwhile, Sixers head coach Brett Brown on Tuesday denied that Fultz is on the trading block, calling the reports “inaccurate.”

Whether or not Fultz — averaging 8.2 points on 41.9 percent shooting (28.6 percent from three) along with 3.1 assists and 3.7 rebounds in 22.5 minutes — stays with the 76ers of course remains to be seen. That said, the expectation for now reportedly is for Fultz to return to the team and resume his role off the bench. Beyond that is anyone’s guess at this point.