For the first time in his 10 year NBA career, Jimmy Butler is heading to the NBA Finals. The Miami Heat took care of business in game 6 of the Eastern Conference Finals by defeating the Boston Celtics.
The Heat have answered the bell on all challenges in the NBA Bubble, but now they will meet a focused LeBron James and the Los Angeles Lakers.
Butler was asked after clinching the Eastern Conference what he thought about taking on James.
“It’s been like this for a very long time: If you want to win, you’ll have to go through a LeBron James-led team. That’s what it normally comes down to … you’re going to get the same test over and over until you pass it. And that test is LeBron James,” Butler said.
When Butler was with the Chicago Bulls, he faced the James-led Heat in the 2013 Eastern Conference Semis. They were tossed out in five games. And in 2015, in James’ second stint with the Cleveland Cavaliers, Butler, and the Bulls were eliminated in six games in the Conference Finals again.
Now, Butler has a chance to redeem himself. The Heat organization has an opportunity to show James that culture is everything and he made a mistake leaving Miami, especially for Cleveland.
Butler and the Heat will enter the NBA Finals as huge underdogs, but they wouldn’t have it any other way.