LeBron James, Kevin Love and the Cleveland Cavaliers are in town for tonight's only visit of the season, an occasion to look back at what might have been.
The Cavaliers pursued a trade to acquire Butler from Chicago before last June's draft, but a deal never materialized after the Cavs abruptly parted ways with GM David Griffin.
In July, the Cavaliers courted veteran free agent Jamal Crawford after the Clippers trade him to Atlanta and Crawford worked a buyout with the Hawks.
Crawford signed a two-year, $8.9 million deal with the Wolves instead.
As he often does, Butler blamed a bad memory when asked if he ever thought he was headed to Cleveland.
"I don't know," he said. "I can't even remember what I had for lunch yesterday, let alone last summer."
Crawford officially signed with the Wolves July 19, but said after this morning's shoot that things might have been different if the Cavaliers had acquired close friend and mentee Isaiah Thomas then rather than a August trade with Boston.
"Yeah, it would have," Crawford said. "We're past friends or basketball relationship. That's like my brother. We go on vacation, its his family and my family. I was a groomsman at his wedding. We're past the basketball phase. That would have had to change things."
Love returns to play his former Wolves team that no longer has such familiar faces as Ricky Rubio and Nikola Pekovic.
"It feels a little different," Love said. "We've played once at home and once away against Utah, so playing against Ricky is definitely different. Nobody's heard from Pek, so I haven't heard from about him or from him. It is a little different to see the turnover. But at the end of the day, I spent six years and it's cool to see this team doing well, in the West."
LeBron was asked if he sees in the Wolves a young team getting ready to threaten in that Western Conference.
"Young team?" he said. "They're not young anymore. No, they're not young anymore. Jimmy, Jamal, Taj, Aaron Brooks, Jeff Teague. They're not young anymore."
Jimmy B when asked if LeBron is his favorite matchup: "No, I got a lot of, ah, I don’t know. LeBron’s a helluva player. I hope I get to guard (former Bulls teammate) D-Wade. Please, let me guard D-Wade. I like matching up against everybody."