Lakers news: Jimmy Butler 'likes' Anthony Davis trade to LA
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Jimmy Butler ‘likes’ Anthony Davis trade to Lakers

Jimmy Butler, Anthony Davis, Lakers

It has become a cherished part of the NBA calendar in the days between the Finals and free agency: players such as Jimmy Butler reacting on social media to blockbuster trades involving superstars such as Anthony Davis.

After the New Orleans Pelicans traded Anthony Davis to the Los Angeles Lakers in the first blockbuster deal of the new NBA offseason, Butler — a player whose next stop is a headline-level story in its own right — made a small gesture on social media.

That small gesture becomes a big deal very quickly.

It might not matter in the end, but until Jimmy Butler has his team firmly secured for the 2019-2020 season, the NBA community will wonder what this “like” on social media means:

The drama of NBA trades and free agency in the weeks following the Finals has often become more substantial than the intrigue of the Finals themselves. That reality might not apply this year, given how riveting the Raptors-Warriors series was, but the Anthony Davis trade to the Lakers has reminded NBA watchers how unfailingly entertaining this time of the year has become.

The theater of NBA summers is hard to ignore for casual sports fans, strictly in relationship to the weight and importance of these player movements. These trades and free agency decisions reshape the competitive balance of the league and carry far-reaching implications. The substance of these transactions is enormous.

Yet, what adds to the deliciousness of each NBA offseason — as embodied in deals such as this Anthony Davis-Lakers WojBomb special — is how players and other NBA personalities jump on social media to comment on the plot twists.

Recall players on the Los Angeles Clippers and Dallas Mavericks who commented — often in emoji form — on the soap-operatic sequence of events which enveloped the ridiculous DeAndre Jordan saga a few years ago. The way social media became woven into that story made the NBA even more accessible and relatable to a lot of fans. The NBA’s social media clout — and the league’s willingness to nurture social media, unlike other sports leagues — has certainly helped the Association gain more fans in the coveted younger demographic groups.

Sure, we will all follow the next move or comment from Jimmy Butler in the wake of the Anthony Davis trade. Being able to monitor Butler on social media is part of why this portion of the NBA year is so fun.