Stephen A. Smith eviscerates 'passive' Jimmy Butler after Miami Heat get demolished in Game 2 - Heat Nation

Stephen A. Smith eviscerates ‘passive’ Jimmy Butler after Miami Heat get demolished in Game 2

Stephen A. Smith and Jimmy Butler

In the wake of the Miami Heat’s embarrassing loss on Monday night in their playoff series against the Milwaukee Bucks, ESPN’s Stephen A. Smith delivered a verbal blast at Heat star Jimmy Butler.

When asked by “First Take” host Molly Qerim whether Butler should take the blame for the Heat’s 132-98 loss, Smith didn’t hold back.

“I’m gonna blame him for it,” Smith said. “Because I’m not talking about him just as a player. I’m talking about him as a leader. Enough’s enough of this nonsense. Let me tell you something about Jimmy Butler. This brother is as real and authentic as it gets. He’s a rough rider, he’s a star in this league, okay? I believe in him. I believe that if the Philadelphia 76ers had Jimmy Butler, they might win the championship.”

After Smith clarified that he was referencing how Butler could have helped last year’s 76ers squad, he resumed his criticism of Butler.

“I believe in this brother, okay? And we saw what we saw from him in the playoffs, particularly in the NBA Finals,” Smith said. “He shot 4-for-22 in Game 1. He shot 4-for-10 last night and Jimmy Butler, it has to stop. This is Jimmy Butler. ‘Numbers don’t matter. You know at the end of the day, it’s about winning.’ I appreciate that because remember with Russell Westbrook, I took the opposite point of view or similar point of view. The numbers don’t necessarily matter because I know you can do that already. Now, you got to be winning instead of going home in the first round.

“In the case of Jimmy Butler, yo bro, you the star. You the face of the franchise. You the face of the franchise. Enough of this, okay? This is the franchise that Zo (Alonzo Mourning), and Shaq (Shaquille O’Neal), and D-Wade (Dwyane Wade), and LeBron [James] and those cats were at. You the new standard, and the reality of the situation is that Jimmy Butler, Jimmy Butler has to show up and be Jimmy Butler. Enough of this passive stuff. Enough of this fitting in. You a star. Okay, you might not be a superstar because like I said, there’s levels to this with LeBron and guys like that on another level, but dammit, you showed, especially in the NBA Finals that you’re on an elevated level when you wanna be. You gotta wanna be every night come playoffs. Enough of this 4-for-22 shooting or 4-for-10 and finishing with 10 points, and we just trying to get things right. You Jimmy freaking Butler. Enough’s enough. Stop playing.”

Butler was one of many Heat players who had a disappointing night on Monday.

The Heat now head home for two games against the Bucks, with hopes that Butler and the entire team can bounce back. Otherwise, the Heat’s title hopes will quickly fade away.

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