Bulls’ Paxson Fires Back At Butler’s Trainer After Forman Criticism: ‘Unprofessional, Wrong’

(CBS) We’ve yet to hear Jimmy Butler publicly comment about his trade from the Bulls to the Timberwolves on Thursday night during the NBA Draft, but one of those in his inner circle is certainly displeased with how it all went down.

Travelle Gaines, Butler’s trainer, offered pointed criticism of the Bulls and specifically general manager Gar Forman in the aftermath of the blockbuster trade Thursday. In Paris with Butler, Gaines tweeted the following at 4:32 a.m. there: “0-82.worst culture in the league.I met drug dealers with better morals then their GM. He is a liar and everyone knows”

Asked about Gaines’ comments, Forman responded, “It is what it is” and added “I guess it’s his opinion.”

Bulls executive vice president of basketball operations John Paxson didn’t hold back, though, firing at Gaines.

“Let me say this: When you trade a player you really like, it’s emotional for both sides,” Paxson said. “I completely disagree when someone takes a shot like that, it’s not right, it’s unprofessional and he shouldn’t have done it. I’ve worked with Gar a long time and it’s an unfair characterization. So he had his motivation, maybe it was emotional, but we’re in a position where we have to do what we feel is right. Tonight, we made a decision to change direction. We’ve defined our path, and we’re going to go that direction. If he’s unhappy, that’s on him, not on us. We’ve been honest with Jimmy when we’ve sat him down and talked to him, we’ve been honest with him. We do that with every player. So it’s unfortunate that things like that have to happen, but in this day and age, you’re going to hear stuff like that. It just shouldn’t have happened. It was wrong for him to do.”

Butler and Bulls management recently had a meeting to talk about the future of him and the team. Asked if the Bulls promised him anything in that meeting that Butler’s camp may have felt the organization then went back on its word on, Forman responded, “No.”

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