Jimmy Butler Says New York & Boston Would “Be At Home” If He Was Healthy For Playoffs

Jimmy Butler

If all the speculation that Jimmy Butler and the Miami Heat might finally be parting ways this offseason proves to be true, there’s at least one team who he’ll refuse to join. That’d be the New York Knicks. Tom Thibodeau coached Butler in Chicago to start his career and later in Minnesota. Despite Thibs’ success in the Big Apple, and Butler’s professed love for the man himself, the six-time All-Star is not at all interested in a reunion.

Plus, Butler feels a type of way about not being healthy enough to compete against the Boston Celtics in the first round of this year’s playoffs. Other than a hot-shooting Game 2 where they stole a win on the road, the Heat stood no match against Boston in a series that ended in five games. According to Jimmy Buckets, it’d be a far different story if he could’ve taken the court.

Sometimes, these sorts of videos out in the wild can be taken out of context or misconstrued. Not in this instance. Butler keeps it real, even giving whomever is filming the vid a countdown before he proceeds with his breakdown about how he would’ve bounced the top-seeded Celtics and the Knicks. Unfortunately, we’ll never know for sure. In a one-point play-in loss to the 76ers — who went on to lose to New York in the first round — Butler suffered a knee injury that knocked him out for the entire series versus Boston. A really tough break, too, considering the Heat can’t seem to get through a playoff run with both Butler and Tyler Herro on the court together.

Not that Miami necessarily coasts through the regular season, but Erik Spoelstra’s gritty squad might be getting a little too cute and experimental of late. The 82-game gauntlet before the postseason really can take a toll. Seeding clearly isn’t everything, as the Heat overcame being the eighth seed last season to reach the NBA Finals. However, it’s hard to count on digging that deep and flipping the so-called switch once the playoffs start all the time.

Based on the pun-intended heated rant Butler went on in this recently released video, perhaps he wants to stick it out in South Beach and see what the Heat can do next season. The fact that the 34-year-old is extension-eligible may lead to him pricing himself out of Miami, though.

Butler embodies what #HEATCulture is all about, or so it seems from the outside looking in. His mentality of not backing down from anyone and relentlessly competing with smart basketball and hard-nosed defense has rubbed off on his teammates. For somebody whose personality didn’t play well in multiple stops before Miami — he’s not Patrick Beverley levels of obnoxious, but still — Butler and the Heat have felt like the perfect partnership and fit.

All good things (well, how about most?) come to an end. Butler’s offseason fate will have ripple effects across the entire NBA, especially if he changes teams. That’ll be one of the most exciting storylines to watch once the playoffs are over.

Until then? Plenty of drama yet to unfold. We’ll see if the (inferior in Jimmy’s opinion) Celtics or Knicks can reach the NBA Finals and top whichever elite adversary emerges from the stacked Western Conference.

A beer bottle on a dock



A beer bottle on a dock