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Adam Silver On Jimmy Butler Drama 'They Gotta Work It Out'

10/11/2018 1:45 PM PDT

Adam Silver on Jimmy Butler Drama with Timberwolves, 'They Gotta Work It Out'

EXCLUSIVE

NBA Commish Adam Silver has obviously been following the drama between Jimmy Butler and the Minnesota Timberwolves ... and tells TMZ Sports, "They gotta work it out."

Butler requested a trade during the off-season -- and hasn't gotten it -- and went wild at practice this week in an apparent statement to the coaches, players, GM and owner. 

In fact, Butler reportedly talked trash to the GM -- saying, "You f**king need me."

So, when we saw Silver leaving Michael's in NYC on Thursday -- we had to get his thoughts. 

"I think that Jimmy is obviously a fantastic player. Timberwolves had a great season last year," Silver said. 

"He's got 1 year left on his contract and I know Jimmy, that if they don't end up doing the right deal for him [to trade him away], he's gonna play hard and he's gonna stay this year."

Silver was adamant he won't have to step in and get involved at this point -- because it's a matter between the player and the team ... they can work it out themselves. 

We also talked about LeBron James -- who Silver praises as the "hardest working player in the league" -- and we asked if he thinks LBJ going West to the Lakers is good for the league. 

Side note -- we shoot a lot of people, but Silver is always one of the nicest dudes we get.  

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