Jimmy Butler came out with a masterful performance in Game 1 of the Eastern Conference Finals against the Boston Celtics. The Miami Heat star dropped a game-high 41 points all over Jayson Tatum and Co. as he led his team to a 118-107 win.
The Celtics had no answer for Butler all night long and the fact that Marcus Smart was sidelined for Game 1 played a key role in this development. If you ask Charles Barkley, the return of the newly-crowned Defensive Player of the Year will almost certainly put a dent in the Heat star's offensive prowess. Shaq, on the other hand, did not agree with Barkley's statement, and it resulted in an intense argument between the pair (h/t Bleacher Report on Twitter):
"It's harder to score on the Defensive Player of the Year fool!"
This Shaq-Chuck debate on Jimmy Butler vs. Marcus Smart got HEATED 🍿 pic.twitter.com/b25N7Zzq2l
— Bleacher Report (@BleacherReport) May 19, 2022
You could barely understand what they were saying as both men continuously spoke over each other. What is clear is that Shaq doesn't believe that Marcus Smart is capable of preventing another offensive explosion from Heat talisman Jimmy Butler. As usual, Barkley had an opposite view.
The good news for the Celtics is that they could get Smart back for Game 2 vs. the Heat. If he is able to return then we should be able to find out who's right between Shaq and Barkley.