Jimmy Butler likes updating his injury status about as much as he likes losing.

So sitting at his locker late Saturday night in Phoenix, ice bags seemingly everywhere, he downplayed the lingering soreness in the right heel contusion that had sidelined him for three straight games before his return against the Suns. He classified a question about Eric Bledsoe rolling into his right knee as "a little something."

But perhaps his only telling response came when asked directly if he would play Sunday against the Timberwolves.

"That’s a really good question," he said.

Dwyane Wade joined Butler in the banged-up department, icing his wrists after a hard fall. The Bulls are 0-2 when both Wade and Butler are out. Both made it clear they want to play Sunday. Wade was listed as probable Saturday, Butler questionable and Paul Zipser (left ankle) doubtful.

"Not going to say I’m out there completely healthy; I’m not," Butler said. "But I want to compete, man. I want to win, I want to lose, with my team, with my guys. I’m just hoping that this thing goes away so I can get back to not favoring it. … The way the game goes, sometimes you have to use that foot. You try to avoid it, but you can’t back away from it.”

Photos of Bulls guard/forward Jimmy Butler.

Old news: Tom Thibodeau’s return to the United Center in December created headlines. It was the first time in Chicago as a visiting head coach since the Bulls fired him in May 2015.

Facing him for a second time, and in Minnesota, dims the spotlight.

"It’s nothing right now," Taj Gibson said. "They’re playing for something totally different. We’re playing to get into the playoffs. That phase is over with now."

Indeed, almost two years have passed since Thibodeau’s five-season run ended. And most of the principals from that era — Derrick Rose, Joakim Noah, Luol Deng and Kirk Hinrich — are elsewhere too.

"I want to beat Thibs. But I want to beat everybody in this league," Butler said. "You’re no friend if you’re not in this locker room, in this organization. It’s a dog eat dog world out there and in between those lines, we have to be a better team and come out with the ‘W’ no matter who we’re playing against."

Layups: Thibodeau has three assistant coaches who were with him in Chicago — Andy Green, Ed Pinckney, Rick Brunson — on his Timberwolves staff. … The Bulls stayed overnight in Phoenix on Friday and took Saturday off before flying here.

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