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Is Jimmy Butler already ‘on thin ice’ with 76ers?

Jimmy Butler has only been with the Philadelphia 76ers for 28 games, but one NBA insider believes the enigmatic superstar already is “on thin ice” with the organization.

Butler of course was shipped to the Sixers after demanding the Minnesota Timberwolves trade him in the offseason. The situation in Minnesota quickly became untenable while the T-Wolves worked on dealing the disgruntled star, primarily due to Butler’s antics.

It would appear, according to ESPN’s Jackie MacMullan, that Butler has brought some semblance of the same kind of disruptive conduct with him to Philadelphia.

MacMullan, who has been about as plugged-in with the Sixers as any national media member, weighed in on the Butler situation during an appearance this week on Zach Lowe’s podcast, “The Lowe Post.”

“I think he’s on thin ice, Zach. I think he’s on thin ice. And I think he’s a very talented player and no one has ever called him soft, either. He’s a very tough player, MacMullan told Lowe, as transcribed by Crossing Broad. “And on paper, he would be exactly what you’d want on a team: he’s not a selfish player; I would never say that about him. He defends… boy does he defend. He gets at it, he makes good decisions on the offensive end of the floor. But… I don’t know him well enough to know, is it real or is it bravado – this whole idea that ‘I’m going to take everyone on. You gonna bully me? You gonna call me a bully? I’m gonna bully you back!’ I can tell you that – having spent a couple of days in Philadelphia – they don’t love it.”

Butler recently stated in an essay he has “no regrets” over how he conducted himself in Minnesota and alluded to how that will remain the same going forward, regardless of how things play out in Philadelphia.

Interestingly, MacMullan also noted during the podcast that it’s unclear whether or not the Sixers will even consider signing Butler, much less to a five-year max deal. Much of that will have to do with how franchise cornerstone Joel Embiid feels about the situation.

Since joining the 76ers, Butler is averaging 19.0 points, 4.8 rebounds, 3.4 assists and 1.9 steals.