“This is Your Guy”: Coach Reveals Dwyane Wade Pushed Him for Jimmy Butler’s Trade to Heat

Published 10/05/2020, 11:48 AM EDT
Oct 4, 2020; Orlando, Florida, USA; Miami Heat forward Jimmy Butler (22) drives to the basket as Los Angeles Lakers forward Kyle Kuzma (0) pursues during the fourth quarter of game three of the 2020 NBA Finals at AdventHealth Arena. The Miami Heat won 115-104. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

The Miami Heat shocked the Los Angeles Lakers in Game 3 of the NBA Finals, beating them 115 to 104. The Heat now have 1 game in hand, as the series rests at 2-1 in favor of the Lakers. In the post-game press conference, Heat head coach Erik Spoelstra has revealed that a Miami Heat legend gave Jimmy Butler the seal of approval.

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With injuries to Goran Dragić and Bam Adebayo ruling them out, de-facto leader Jimmy Butler had to step up. Butler’s performance was crucial to their win, with him becoming the third ever player in history after Jerry West and LeBron James to post a 40 point triple-double in the finals, scoring 40 points, 11 rebounds, and 13 assists. It wasn’t just Butler’s attacking prowess, but his work on defense that stood out, register 2 steals and 2 blocks.

Oct 4, 2020; Orlando, Florida, USA; Miami Heat forward Jimmy Butler (22) dribbles as forward Jae Crowder (99) blocks Los Angeles Lakers forward LeBron James (23) during the fourth quarter of game three of the 2020 NBA Finals at AdventHealth Arena. The Miami Heat won 115-104. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

‘Jimmy Buckets’ has been a key part of the Heat’s journey to the Finals, with him leading the Heat in PPG (points-per-game) with 22.1 in the post-season. After disappointing tenures at with the Chicago Bulls, Minnesota Timberwolves, and the Philadelphia 76ers, Butler seems to have found a home with the Heat.

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Dwayne Wade always believed in Jimmy Butler

During the post-game press conference, Miami Heat head coach Erik Spoelstra said “Look, how do you — how else do you say it other than Jimmy effing Butler. But this is what he wanted, this is what we wanted. It’s really hard to analyze or describe Jimmy until you actually feel him between the four lines. He’s a supreme, elite competitor and we needed it….
But in terms of you saying a Marquette guy, you know, Dwyane (Wade) swore to us, he looked Pat (Riley) and I dead in the eye and said this is your guy. This is the next guy.”

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Wade, whose alma mater is also Marquette like Butler, has consistently heaped praise on Butler, and even defended him against critics. In a reply to Will Manso tweeting “Jimmy Butler is in bada** mode”, Wade tweeted “Say it louder for the idiots in the backseat.”

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What did you think about Butler’s performance against the Lakers? Could he give this Heat team a second wind against the Lakers?

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Varun Khanna

1339 articles

Starting off as a tennis author in 2018, Varun Khanna has gone on to contribute to EssentiallySports in various capacities. After setting up interviews with the likes of Serena Williams’ coach Patrick Mouratoglou, Alizé Cornet, and Noah Rubin, Varun is now part of all major ATP and WTA press conferences and has gone on to pen more than 1300 articles for EssentiallySports. He now heads the tennis and NBA division of the organization.

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