Jimmy Butler gives middle finger to those that continue to doubt Miami Heat’s title chances

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Miami Heat star Jimmy Butler said that he doesn’t “give a f—” that “nobody” is going to pick the team to win it all this season.

“Put your head down and just battle,” Butler told Sports Illustrated. “… Nobody’s gonna pick us, ever. Nobody’s gonna pick us this year. No one’s ever gonna pick any team that I’m on, which is great, because I don’t give a f— and I don’t like none of y’all anyways.”

Butler starred throughout Miami’s playoff run to the 2023 NBA Finals but was particularly great against Giannis Antetokounmpo and the Milwaukee Bucks in the first round. He averaged 37.6 points, 6.0 rebounds and 4.8 assists per game for the series while shooting 59.7 percent from the field and 44.4 percent from behind the 3-point arc.

His best game of the Bucks series was undoubtedly Game 4. Butler scored a career-high 56 points and knocked down 19 of his 28 shots from the field, including three of his eight 3-point attempts. The Heat won Game 4 by a score of 119-114 to take a commanding 3-1 series lead and closed out the Bucks in Game 5.

Butler has been a member of the Chicago Bulls, Minnesota Timberwolves, Philadelphia 76ers and Heat since the Bulls drafted the former Marquette University star with the No. 30 overall pick of the 2011 NBA Draft.

During the 2022-23 regular season, his fourth with the Heat franchise, Butler averaged 22.9 points, 5.9 rebounds and 5.3 assists per game across 64 games (all starts). The 34-year-old wing also shot 35.0 percent from behind the 3-point line.

Butler hasn’t played for another team besides the Heat since the 2018-19 season, when he was a member of the 76ers. After the 76ers’ season came to an end in the second round of the 2019 playoffs against Kawhi Leonard and the Toronto Raptors, Philadelphia traded Butler to the Heat that offseason in a sign-and-trade that involved four teams in total.

The wing is right not to care that folks aren’t picking the Heat to win the 2024 NBA title. After all, there were folks who didn’t believe the Heat were title contenders last season, but the team made it all the way to the NBA Finals and was just a few wins away from winning it all.

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Jesse is a 23-year-old sports journalist with extensive experience covering the NBA.