Heat star Jimmy Butler’s on-brand answer about quick turnaround after NBA Finals run
With preseason set to begin later this week, the NBA has wrapped up an unusually short offseason. This is especially true for the Miami Heat, who competed in the Finals against the Los Angeles Lakers less two months ago and yet are set to play their first preseason game against the New Orleans Pelicans next week.
Heat forward Jimmy Butler, however, was back at the team’s practice like his teammates. When asked about the short turnaround between seasons, he said that the important thing was being ready, according to ESPN’s Nick Friedell.
“Nobody really cares [about the Heat’s short offseason]. I got a job to do so that’s what I got to be ready to do…nicked up or not. I think a lot of people are going to be that. Still [got to] go out there and compete.”
The short rest could also prove to be an advantage for Butler and the Heat, as it means that they are in better shape compared to teams that haven’t played competitive basketball for a longer time.
Butler, in particular, is coming off some of the best basketball that he’s played in his career. In his first season for the Heat, the five-time All-Star averaged 19.9 points, 6.7 rebounds, six assists, and 1.8 steals while shooting 45.5% from the field.
He raised those averages in the Finals against the Lakers, putting up 26.2 points, 8.3 rebounds, 9.8 assists, and 2.2 steals while shooting 55.2% from the field and 30.8% from downtown. Butler helped the shorthanded Heat team compete against LeBron James and Anthony Davis, and his performances included a 40-point triple double in a Game 3 win and another triple in Game 5, another Miami victory.
He hopes to recapture his deadly form as Miami begins another season in a more competitive Eastern Conference.