Timberwolves Won't Bite On Rockets' Trade Offer For Jimmy Butler

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He was traded to the Timberwolves before last season.

Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.

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Four first-round picks are the most a team can offer in a trade, per league rules, and Wojnarowski reports the protections on these selections would be "limited." "Minnesota was still adamant on receiving Eric Gordon and PJ Tucker, but Houston will not put Tucker on the table".

The belief is that Thibodeau would rather see an impact player included in the deal, and perhaps less draft picks since first rounders can not be packaged together in consecutive years. Wojnarowski writes that the Rockets are ready to "sacrifice some long-term roster flexibility and go all-in with a legitimate third star" to partner with last year's MVP James Harden and Chris Paul in pursuit of an National Basketball Association championship. National Basketball Association rules say that first-round picks can't be conveyed in successive years, and no pick can be dealt farther out than seven seasons. Butler will become a free agent at season's end, so four first-round picks would be quite the expense for what in all likelihood would be a rental player.

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For the Rockets to include a package with four first-round picks, they'd have to be spread out over a seven-year period, as teams are prohibited from trading their first-round picks in consecutive seasons.

The Rockets are 1-3 and welcome the Clippers to Houston on Friday. A revised offer reportedly packaged Richardson, center Kelly Olynyk and a first-rounder, but they all got the boot from president Tom Thibodeau, who is quarterbacking operations in trade talks.

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The Rockets would have a strong desire to re-sign Butler in the offseason.

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