One of the prominent players in the NBA that switched teams during the offseason was Jimmy Butler. The former Marquette standout requested a trade from the Chicago Bulls, and they sent him to the Minnesota Timberwolves. Butler had a slow start with the Timberwolves. His performances were a bit distant from the ones he had in the 2016-17 season. Due to this, he made a promise nearly two weeks ago.

Following three consecutive games where he failed to score at least 15 points, Jimmy Butler vowed to score more for the Timberwolves. "I'm going back to putting the ball in the basket," Butler told the Star Tribune after a defeat to the Golden State Warriors on November 11.

In that outing, he just registered 11 points. He added that a "different player" will be seen moving forward.

Since that promise, Butler has been on a roll. In the next five games of the Timberwolves, he scored 20+ points four times. Included in those was his 26-point performance (season-high) in a 100-97 home defeat to the Detroit Pistons on November 19. The only time he failed to explode on offense was in a victory over the San Antonio Spurs. He only had six points in that contest.

If Butler can continue scoring like this, the Timberwolves could be on their way to ending a 13-year playoff drought. Helping him in that mission are rising talents Karl-Anthony Towns and Andrew Wiggins. NBA veterans Jeff Teague, Taj Gibson, and Jamal Crawford are contributing too.

Failed attempts

Jimmy Butler's 26-point performance versus the Detroit Pistons had an unfortunate ending.

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As mentioned, the Minnesota Timberwolves lost, but they had two opportunities to tie the game and send it to overtime.

With six seconds left and the Pistons up 98-95, Butler got fouled by Avery Bradley while shooting a three. The 28-year-old Timberwolves star made the first two free-throws to cut the deficit to a single-point, 98-97. Sadly, he failed on the third shot from the charity stripe. The miss led to a Tobias Harris rebound and a Timberwolves foul. Harris calmly sank both free-throws to extend the Pistons' advantage to three points, 100-97.

Following Harris' trip to the free-throw line, Butler and the Timberwolves had three seconds to force overtime. Butler received the ball and rushed for one last heave from beyond the arc. The ball went in, then out as the final buzzer sounded.

Up next

The defeat to the Detroit Pistons ended a three-game winning streak for Jimmy Butler and the Minnesota Timberwolves. Despite this, they are still third in the Western Conference with a 10-6 record. On November 20, they can return on the winning track when they hit the road to take on the Charlotte Hornets.