Utah Jazz: Jae Crowder and Jimmy Butler get in entertaining Twitter spat

SALT LAKE CITY, UT - FEBRUARY 14: Jae Crowder #99 of the Utah Jazz applauds after a game against the Phoenix Suns at Vivint Smart Home Arena on February 14, 2018 in Salt Lake City, Utah. (Photo by Gene Sweeney Jr./Getty Images)
SALT LAKE CITY, UT - FEBRUARY 14: Jae Crowder #99 of the Utah Jazz applauds after a game against the Phoenix Suns at Vivint Smart Home Arena on February 14, 2018 in Salt Lake City, Utah. (Photo by Gene Sweeney Jr./Getty Images) /

Following a physical game between the Utah Jazz and Minnesota Timberwolves, Jae Crowder and Jimmy Butler got into it on Twitter.

To put it lightly, last night’s contest between the Utah Jazz and Minnesota Timberwolves got a little chippy. It started out in the first half when Karl-Anthony Towns was called for two quick technicals and ejected just before halftime, but the madness was far from over at that point.

Despite having a phenomenal game for most of the contest, Jeff Teague was apparently frustrated late in the game and decided to let it out on former Minnesota Timberwolf and current Jazz starting point guard Ricky Rubio with an uncalled-for body check that sent him flying into the first row as you can see in the video below:

This led to a little scuffle that saw the newest Jazzman Jae Crowder get into Teague’s face to defend his teammate, which was great to see out of him. Teague was promptly given a flagrant 2 foul and ejected from the game.

Something somewhat surprising happened not long after the incident, though. Injured Timberwolves star Jimmy Butler took to Twitter for the first time since 2016 to tweet out some interesting thoughts on the situation. Apparently his inability to be on the court inspired him to put his Twitter skills back in action. Here’s what he had to say:

In my opinion, that’s a pretty classless tweet. Jeff Teague’s move was a cheap shot that has no place in basketball, and I know that I wouldn’t want someone on my team tweeting out in support of a play that could have led to injury. Several fans on Twitter made it clear that they felt likewise.

Apparently Butler doesn’t exactly see eye-to-eye with Ricky Rubio due to an incident where Rubio wanted to visit his former teammates in their locker room, but regardless of any personal issues, there’s no justification for backing such a dirty play.

Shortly after Teague was ejected, suddenly Timberwolves head coach Tom Thibodeau and Jae Crowder got into it with one another, though it looked like Thibs initiated the “discussion”. A double technical was assessed and Butler broke his Twitter silence once again with the following:

Big talk from a guy talking smack behind the safety of his phone screen.

Apparently since the injured Butler couldn’t get into the action on the court, he decided he’d take the keyboard warrior approach. Unsurprisingly, shortly after the game, Crowder himself replied in his typical all-caps glory:

Honestly, if I had to put money on it, I’d probably pick the hard-nosed Crowder in a fight between the two. However, first I’d put money on this being little more than trash talk and an entertaining Twitter spat, nothing more.

Crowder all but confirmed as much in a post-game interview as he declared the exchange between the two isn’t anything serious and went as far as to say, referring to Butler, “That’s my guy.” After all, the two were teammates at Marquette, so it’s quite likely this is two old friends ribbing each other more than it is anything serious.

Nevertheless, though Butler and Crowder might be close due to past ties, the bad blood between the Jazz and T-Wolves is now undoubtedly real. Butler and Teague weren’t any too happy with Rubio and I’m sure that Towns has some beef with Rudy Gobert and Co. as well. With all this escalating and after an extremely physical bout between the two teams last night, expect the final meeting on April 1st in Minnesota to be an intense contest.

Next: Are the playoffs slipping away from the Utah Jazz?

The Wolves are struggling of late and have a tough schedule ahead whereas the Jazz have a pretty cushy slate in the coming weeks, so by the time that rematch rolls around, these two teams could very well be jockeying closely for playoff position. Although Crowder and Butler’s spat may have been little more than talk, I have a feeling the animosity on the court between these two teams is entirely real.

In other words, we should be in for a fun finish to the season as the Jazz look to make a push for the playoffs, and as they do so, be sure to have that April 1st matchup circled on your calendar. If last night was any indication, it’s going to be a fun one.