Jimmy Butler praises tennis star Carlos Alcaraz, who says he gets nervous playing in front of celebrities like Heat star

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Tennis star Carlos Alcaraz, who’s currently the No. 1 men’s player in the world according to the ATP Rankings, had a special day at the Miami Open on Sunday.

First, the 19-year-old earned a convincing victory over Dusan Lajovic, and after his win, he got a chance to meet up with Miami Heat star Jimmy Butler.

Butler spoke about the young phenom and gave him some major props for how he’s “always poised.”

“He’s always poised,” Butler told ATPTour.com. “He’s never rattled and more than anything, it looks like he’s having so much fun out there. I think whenever you have fun and you have that mentality that you know you’re the best, you go out there and you play as though you’re the best, results happen and he’s not No. 1 for no reason.”

Alcaraz admitted that he gets a little nervous when he sees celebrities like Butler at his matches.

“I feel a little bit nervous when I see a person like Jimmy, celebrities, when I was playing, like in the US Open,” Alcaraz said. “For me it’s unbelievable. In certain ways I can’t believe that these people enjoy watching my matches for me. It’s crazy.”

This weekend wasn’t the first time Butler and Alcaraz crossed paths. Butler recently uploaded a video to YouTube that detailed his trip to Argentina from this season’s NBA All-Star break. The NBA star and tennis star can be seen meeting up around the 11:15 mark of the video.

In the video, Butler can he heard telling Alcaraz that he’s a “huge fan” and that he plays tennis a “little bit” himself.

Around that same time, Alcaraz called Butler a “legend of his sport.”

“I have seen him play several times,” he said. “I have a lot of respect for him, after all he is a legend of his sport, a star and to have him come to see me is a privilege. I thanked him and invited him to the final.”

It’s clear that the two athletes have tons of respect for one another. Alcaraz is so young and talented that he’s likely going to enjoy success in the tennis world for years to come.

Butler is 33 and probably doesn’t have quite as much time left in his sport. However, he’s still at the top of his game and continues to do everything he can to bring a championship back to Miami.

The veteran is averaging 22.8 points, 6.0 rebounds and 5.1 assists per game this season while shooting 53.0 percent from the field and 35.1 percent from beyond the arc. His squad has a 40-35 record and is fighting to avoid the NBA’s play-in tournament.

As for Alcaraz, he’s still alive in the Miami Open and will be back in action on Tuesday.

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Jason has covered the NBA for multiple years and has plenty of memories involving the Miami Heat. He expects there will be winning basketball in South Florida for years to come.