76ers forward Jimmy Butler intends to decline his $19.8 million player option to test the free agency waters, Yahoo Sports! Chris Haynes reports.
Haynes added that Philadelphia is still adamant about "doing whatever it takes" to retain Bulter but they were aware that this decision was likely to come. Bulter has until June 29 to officially opt out of his player option which would make him one of the top unrestricted free agents on the market.
In 55 games with the Sixers, Butler averaged 18.2 points, 5.3 rebounds and 1.8 steals. Philadelphia acquired the four-time All-Star from the Timberwolves in November along with Justin Patton in a deal that sent Jerryd Bayless, Robert Covington, Dario Šarić and a 2022 second-round draft pick to Minnesota.
The Lakers are reportedly interested in acquiring Butler, per Haynes. Los Angeles is also rumored to be in the market for Pelicans All-Star forward Anthony Davis.