5. Jimmy Butler
Jimmy Butler has a slight edge over Kevin Love at number five because of his ability to defend the best player on the opposing team, as well as Kevin Love’s subpar season in comparison to what we have come to expect from the stretch four.
Jimmy Butler, the NBA’s most improved player, had a breakout season in which he scored 20 points a game, making the gamble to reject an extension from the Bulls look like a smart move. Now, Butler is seeking a short term contract in order to receive a massive pay raise when the salary cap rises, betting on himself again. However, he just postponed four meetings after Chicago offered him a max contract.
The other main player in the Jimmy Butler sweepstakes seems to be the Lakers. Butler previously stated that he wanted to sign a short term deal with the Lakers before the Bulls offered him the max. Chicago is a better fit for him though. The Bulls stood as the Cavs’ biggest challenge on their way to the finals, and a healthy Chicago team could compete again for a trip to the finals.
Prediction: Chicago Bulls