Jimmy Butler on Miami Heat: ‘We can beat anybody when we’re playing the right way’

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Miami Heat star Jimmy Butler is confident that the team can beat anyone it faces in the postseason, as long as it is playing the “right way.”

The Heat are currently the No. 7 seed in the Eastern Conference, but they have a shot to get up to the No. 6 spot depending on how they and the Brooklyn Nets finish the 2022-23 season.

“I don’t give a damn,” Butler told Yahoo! Sports when informed that a recent Nets loss moved the Heat closer to the sixth seed. “‘I just love playing basketball. We can beat anybody when we’re playing the right way. Play-in, here we come. Playoffs, here we come.’”

Butler doesn’t seem to care who the Heat end up playing, and it makes sense given the fact that Miami made the NBA Finals in the 2019-20 season despite not earning a top-three seed in the East.

The Heat pride themselves on playing a strong defensive style of basketball, with Butler and Bam Adebayo leading the way. At times this season, especially after the All-Star break, Miami has slipped in that area.

Butler called out the team’s play on that end of the floor recently, claiming that as a team, the Heat “mess up” a good amount.

However, if the Heat can turn things around, they have a legit shot to make a run in a tough Eastern Conference. They made the Eastern Conference Finals last season with a very similar group, losing to the Boston Celtics in seven games.

This season, Miami would match up with the Philadelphia 76ers if it were to jump the Nets for the No. 6 seed.

If not, the team would be forced to participate in the league’s play-in tournament. If the Heat are the No. 7 or No. 8 seed heading into the play-in, they’ll have two chances to win one game to make the final playoff field.

The Milwaukee Bucks (No. 1) will play the No. 8 seed in the first round of the playoffs while the Boston Celtics will play the No. 7 seed.

Butler is clearly confident in his team, and the Heat have made the Eastern Conference Finals in two of the last three seasons.

The Heat star will look to rally his team over the final stretch of the regular season to make sure the Heat are playing their best basketball in the postseason.

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Peter is a graduate of Quinnipiac University where he covered the MAAC and college basketball for three years. He has worked for NBC Sports, the Connecticut Sun and the Meriden Record-Journal covering basketball and other major sports. Follow him on Twitter @peterdewey2.