Sources: Jimmy Butler to be named NBA's Most Improved Player

Chicago Bulls swingman Jimmy Butler will be named the NBA's Most Improved Player this week, according to league sources.

Sources say Butler could be officially introduced as the league's MIP award winner as early as Thursday, with Friday's Game 3 at home against Cleveland in the Eastern Conference semifinals looming as a natural opportunity for the NBA to present Butler with the award in front of his home fans at the United Center.

Butler said after the Bulls' 106-91 loss in Game 2 on Wednesday night that he's focused on winning games rather than the award.

"I want to win this series, I want to win the championship, and at the end of the season, maybe that Most Improved award will mean a lot more," he said.

Despite losing 17 games to injury, Butler hiked his scoring average this season from 13.1 points per game to 20.0 and became an Eastern Conference All-Star for the first time. He also raised his shooting percentage from 39.7 percent from the floor last season to 46.2 percent.

Other top candidates for the award included Golden State's Draymond Green, Miami's Hassan Whiteside, Utah's Rudy Gobert and Milwaukee's Khris Middleton.

ESPNChicago.com's Nick Friedell contributed to this report.