Miami Heat president Pat Riley was quick to shut down reports that he called Minnesota Timberwolves president Tom Thibodeau a "motherf-----" on the phone following failed trade negotiations for All-Star Jimmy Butler.
"As to what has been reported in the past 24 hours, I have too much respect for Tom Thibodeau and all that he's accomplished in the league. Our conversations have been nothing but cordial ...," Riley said in a statement Friday, according to the South Florida Sun Sentinel's Ira Winderman.
"... and I have never used that kind of language in negotiations. But I do admit to telling Danny Ainge to ..."
Riley was referencing a 2013 incident in which he told Boston Celtics president Danny Ainge to "shut the f--- up and manage his own team" after Ainge chastised LeBron James for complaining about officiating."
The Heat and Timberwolves were on the verge of competing a deal for Butler, with the two sides having reportedly exchanged medical information. Josh Richardson, Dion Waiters, and a protected first-round pick were reportedly heading to Minnesota, but at the last minute, Thibodeau reportedly asked Riley for more draft picks as compensation, resulting in Riley's now refuted outburst.