Heat star Jimmy Butler explains why he showed up at 3:30 a.m. for first day of training camp
New Miami Heat star Jimmy Butler was already leading by example prior to the first day of training camp, waking up at the crack of dawn to get his first sweat in. The 6-foot-7 two-way star laced them up quickly, arriving at the practice facility well before the rest of his teammates were expected to report.
Butler explained his mindset behind the early wake-up call:
“Just a little extra work while y’all in your third dream. I like to get it in,” said Butler following the first of two-a-days on Tuesday, according to Ira Winderman of the South Florida Sun-Sentinel. “How did I get in today? I clocked in at 3:30. You’re asleep, right?”
Butler already had a summer full of 4 a.m. workouts, making this no different from his regular routine:
“I just want to compete,” said the 30-year-old former All-Star. “I just want to hoop. All the training is cool. But I want to get out there with my guys, talk a little bit. But more than anything, just compete. I think that’s why we do what we do over the summer. For real, it’s loading up for this. I think today was a good start.”
The two-way small forward is a perfect fit for the Heat’s puzzle, personifying the rigorous culture the franchise upholds to this day, one that is cemented in effort, accountability, and work ethic, which Heat coach Erik Spoelstra has certainly noticed already:
“The thing that also is notable about that is he has a Hall of Fame work ethic,” said his coach Erik Spoelstra. “That’s not something of myth. That’s something that’s well earned and it’s real. I think he also respects that he’s walking into a gym where there’s several guys that are right there with him, step for step, in terms of work ethic.
“They may not be coming in at crazy hours like he comes in, but they’re putting in time and putting in a lot of extra time.”
Butler’s morning habits might be a bit extreme for others on the team, but no one will question the work the highest-paid player is putting in — leading by example and setting the bar for those who take the court alongside him.