Heat’s Erik Spoelstra takes a shot at NBA 2K while praising Jimmy Butler
The Miami Heat are certainly one of the biggest surprise teams of 2019-20 NBA regular season, currently sitting third in the Eastern Conference with a 25-9 record.
Despite a tough shooting night against the defending champions Toronto Raptors, the Heat managed to grind out an 84-76 victory at the AmericanAirlines Arena. It was their 7th victory in their last 10 games.
Among those who struggled from the field was their two-way superstar Jimmy Butler. Butler made only two of his 10 shots (20 percent). He still finished with eight points, 12 rebounds and seven assists in 32 minutes of action.
After the game, one reporter pointed out to Heat head coach Erik Spoelstra that the team is 11-2 when Butler makes only five field goals or fewer. Asked whether he had some qualms about his All-Star’s off night, Spoelstra had this to say, via Sportscenter.
The 49-year-old mentor explained that Butler does a lot of things right far more than what the box score suggests.
“I think that’s what young players should learn coming into the league of what a max players actually means. It’s not about stats. It’s not about that final number on the box score. It’s not about whatever 2K numbers you can get. It’s about how your team functions and are winning because of the player,” he said of Butler.
“There’s no debate about this. He’s having an incredible impact on our winning, on our bottom line. That’s why we chased him so hard as a max player. That should be the definition from here on out, but it’s not. It gets clouded. Too often it becomes about stats, about people who can pile up a bunch of stats, but they are empty stats and they don’t impact winning”.
"It's not about stats. … It's not about whatever 2K numbers you can get."
Erik Spoelstra explains his definition of a max player, and why Jimmy Butler is one of them 📋 pic.twitter.com/Y006UjsVZk
— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) January 3, 2020
Butler, of course, surprised a lot of fans in the offseason when he chose the Heat over re-signing with the Philadelphia 76ers.
The veteran forward seems to have found a perfect fit in Miami’s system. He is currently averaging all-around numbers of 20.3 points, 6.8 rebounds, 6.6 assists, and two steals per game.