All-Star Jimmy Butler farewells the Chicago Bulls and thanked their fans for his time with the NBA franchise in a heartfelt letter.
Butler was traded during Thursday's NBA draft, dealt to the Minnesota Timberwolves in exchange for Zach LaVine, Kris Dunn and the rights to number seven overall draft pick Lauri Markkanen.
A three-time All-Star, Butler - who averaged 23.9 points per game last season - used Instagram to say thanks to the Bulls and the city of Chicago on Friday.
"I truly struggle with the words because you've been so much more than just my home for the last 6 years, you've been my life!" he wrote, in part, in a caption to an Instagram post. "Chicago, I love you. Thanks for embracing a kid from Tomball [Texas] like one of your own."
Chicago, What can I say?! I truly struggle with the words because you've been so much more than just my home for the last 6 years, you've been my life! You've embraced me like a son and pushed me to get better every day, every season. I can honestly say that I have always been incredibly motivated to succeed; it's just the way I'm built. But I know I owe so much to the person I am now, and to the player that I've become, to you. You always pushed me to never give anything less than my absolute best night in, night out. That's what you expected. That's what you deserved. And, I hope you know that's what I dedicated my life to every time I walked into the facility or stepped on the floor of the United Center. Thank you to the entire Bulls organization and Reinsdorf Family for taking a chance on me in 2011 and for giving me the opportunity to play the sport I love for such a great franchise. I'll never forget the feeling I had when I was drafted and when I played my first minutes. It's an experience that I wouldn't have wanted with any other team and I'm so thankful to you for giving me that opportunity. Chicago, I love you. Thanks for embracing a kid from Tomball like one of your own. On to a new home and a new organization. Thankfully, with some familiar faces! PS... AND PROBABLY MOST IMPORTANT! THANK YOU TO EVERYBODY BEHIND THE ORGANIZATION THAT DO NOT GET THE SHINE THAT THEY DESERVE!! YALL ARE THE REAL ALL-STARS!! - Jimmy G. Buckets (@staceyking21 )
Butler was drafted by the Bulls in 2011, taken with the 30th pick six years ago.