Anticipating a bigger payday after the NBA reaps an anticipated financial windfall from a new TV deal, Chicago Bulls star Jimmy Butler -- a restricted free agent -- reportedly prefers signing a short-term deal with any team that sends him an offer sheet for the 2015 offseason.
One team reportedly interested in signing Butler is the Los Angeles Lakers, according to Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo Sports. The report adds that the Milwaukee Bucks also may chase Butler. However, the Bulls will have the option of matching any offer made to Butler and retaining his services for the duration of the new contract.
According to Wojnarowski, Butler is now thinking twice before signing a maximum five-year, $90 million contract offered by Chicago. If Butler chooses a shorter-term deal, it would mean he would hit free agency again in two or three years -- and potentially earn more than what the Bulls can offer in the same span.
Butler is among the most promising players in the league after proving himself in the 2014-15 season. The No. 30 overall selection in the 2011 NBA Draft, Butler started in just 20 games in his first two seasons with the Bulls but nabbed the starting shooting guard spot in his third and fourth year with the team.
Butler, who averaged 20 points, 5.8 rebounds, 3.3 assists and 1.8 steals last season, was the league’s Most Improved Player in 2015 and also made the NBA All-Star squad the same year. Aside from his offensive prowess, Butler is an effective two-way player, making the NBA All-Defensive Second Team in 2014 and 2015.