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NBA executive believes Heat are leading contenders for Jimmy Butler

Jesse Johnson-USA TODAY Sports

There’s no shortage of teams interested in disgruntled Minnesota Timberwolves star Jimmy Butler after he requested a trade from the team earlier this month.

Butler had initially given Minnesota a list of three teams, the Los Angeles Clippers, Brooklyn Nets and New York Knicks, that he’d sign an extension with. Though, other teams are willing to make a move for him in hopes that he decides to re-sign with them in July.

Reports earlier this week noted that the Miami Heat were among those interested in Butler. Now, according to Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald, at least one Eastern Conference executive believes the Heat are the leading contender to land Butler.

How a trade of this ilk would work is anyone’s guess. Miami’s biggest trade chip would be center Hassan Whiteside. But with Karl-Anthony Towns just recently being extended, he doesn’t seem to be a fit in Minnesota.

There’s also a chance the Wolves attempt to get a third team in involved. It’s in this that the Sacramento Kings and their plethora of cap room could take on bad contracts while accumulating further draft capital (more on that here).

Wolves owner Glen Taylor had indicated over the weekend that he wanted to get a deal done here soon. We’re not expecting this process to play out much longer. Whether that means Butler will be playing in South Beach with Dwyane Wade and Co. remains to be seen.