Jimmy Butler breaks his silence with heartfelt Instagram post: 'Chicago, I love you'

ByESPN.com ESPN logo
Saturday, June 24, 2017

Jimmy Butler is no longer with theChicago Bulls, but the love between the All-Star shooting guard and the city of Chicago will always be strong.

During Thursday's NBA draft, Butler and the Bulls' No. 16 pick (Justin Patton) were traded to the Minnesota Timberwolves in exchange for Kris Dunn, Zach LaVine and the No. 7 pick (Lauri Markkanen).

It was a tough blow for Bulls fans, but Butler has an important message to share: "Chicago, I love you."

On Friday afternoon, the 27-year-old broke his silence with a heartfelt Instagram post that paid tribute to the fans, the city and the Bulls organization.

"You always pushed me to never give anything less than my absolute best night in, night out. That's what you expected. That's what you deserved. And, I hope you know that's what I dedicated my life to every time I walked into the facility or stepped on the floor of the United Center."

"Thank you to the entire Bulls organization and Reinsdorf Family for taking a chance on me in 2011 and for giving me the opportunity to play the sport I love for such a great franchise."

In his six seasons with the Bulls, Butler rose to become a three-time All-Star and one of the best two-way players in the NBA. Last season, Butler set career highs in points per game (23.3), rebounds (6.0) and assists (5.3).

As a member of the Timberwolves, Butler will be reunited with coach Tom Thibodeau. The duo spent four seasons together in Chicago before Thibodeau was fired by the Bulls in 2015.

--Isaac Chipps