After blowing a major lead, the Heat had the ball in the final seconds of the fourth quarter with a chance to tie the game or take the lead. Jimmy Butler went for the kill by attempting a game-winning 3-pointer, but the shot rimmed out, giving the Knicks a two-point win.
KNICKS HOLD ON IN THE MUST-WIN ‼️
After coming back from down 21 points the Knicks held on to keep their East Group B hopes alive 👀
What a game. pic.twitter.com/i4bvXjw0p4
— NBA (@NBA) November 25, 2023
After the game, Butler issued a promise: that he’ll make the next one.
Jimmy Butler: “I guarantee I’ll make the next one.”
— Five Reasons Sports 🏀🏈⚾️🏒⚽️ (@5ReasonsSports) November 25, 2023
Butler is no stranger to taking gutsy shots in big moments, even if they don’t always fall.
Perhaps the most notable example of this came in Game 7 of the 2022 Eastern Conference Finals against the Boston Celtics. With the Heat down by two in crunch time, Butler opted for a 3-pointer, but he left it short.
Butler is the type of player whose confidence will likely never be damaged by a missed shot, so it’s probably a safe bet that he will continue to trust himself in big moments.
This season, the veteran is averaging 20.7 points, 5.0 rebounds and 4.0 assists per game while shooting 46.2 percent from the field and 41.5 percent from deep. He’s statistically having the best season of his career in terms of 3-point shooting, which may be another reason why he went for the kill against the Knicks on Friday.
In the loss, Butler finished with 23 points on 7-for-14 shooting from the field and 3-for-5 shooting from deep. Miami led by as many as 21 in the battle, but New York used a huge fourth quarter to steal a win from the Heat.
Butler’s squad is now 10-6 on the season and will look to bounce back on Saturday against the Brooklyn Nets. The game against Brooklyn will mark the final leg of a five-game road trip for Miami, a trip that the Heat have gone 2-2 on so far.
There isn’t a lot of separation at the top of the Eastern Conference currently. The Heat are in fifth place, but they’re only two games back of the top spot. If they can string some wins together, they may find themselves in a fantastic position soon.