Rockets ramp up efforts to trade for Jimmy Butler, reports say

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The Houston Rockets apparently aren't giving up on their pursuit of Jimmy Butler just yet. Butler and owner Glen Taylor have stated he is committed to Minnesota while he is still there, but Taylor has told Butler he will be traded when there is a good enough offer, according to Wojnarowski.

Four first-round picks are the most a team can offer in a trade, per league rules, and Wojnarowski reports the protections on these selections would be "limited".

The belief is that Thibodeau would rather see an impact player included in the deal, and perhaps less draft picks since first rounders can not be packaged together in consecutive years.

The Heat's last offer included caving on three-and-D extraordinaire Josh Richardson and shooting guard Dion Waiters along with a protected first-round pick.

He can become a free agent at the end of the season, having turned down a contract extension from the Timberwolves over the summer.

Through four games this season Butler is averaging 24.8 points, 5.3 rebounds, 3.5 assists and 3.8 steals. Teams are not allowed to trade first-round picks in consecutive years and can't trade out a pick farther than seven seasons.

Recent reports have suggested the Timberwolves are hesitant to trade Butler to the Rockets since they both compete in the Western Conference.

This year has started out rough as the team dropped to 1-3 after a Wednesday night defeat to the Utah Jazz.

Houston brought back most of that team from past year, but lost an important player at the wing in Trevor Ariza and depth like Luc Mbah a Moute.