“Definition of a Two-Way Player”: Erik Spoelstra Praises Jimmy Butler Following Tireless 47 Minute Display

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The Miami Heat fended off the Los Angeles to win Game 5 of the NBA Finals. It was a monster performance from Jimmy Butler that helped them to come away with the win. Tireless and spirited, Butler knew the responsibility he had, and he didn’t let the team down.

During the post-game interview, Heat coach Erik Spoelstra praised Butler for his gritty performance on both ends of the floor.

“His will to win is remarkable. And to do that in 47+ minutes and take the challenge on the other end. Every young player coming into this league should study footage on Jimmy Butler. He is the definition of a two-way player: Competing on both ends, five steals, making big place down the stretch for us offensively.”

Jimmy Butler lives up to his nickname

Butler has built a reputation for being a big-game player. This is why his nickname is Jimmy G Buckets, and the G stands for Gets. Tonight, he lived up to this and got a bucket whenever he wanted. He scored 35 points, shooting 11/19 from the field, and was a menace to guard for the Lakers. His ability to draw fouls was on full display as went to the line 12 times and converted every free throw.

Miami Heat forward Jimmy Butler is interviewed after defeating the Los Angeles Lakers
Miami Heat forward Jimmy Butler is interviewed after defeating the Los Angeles Lakers in game five of the 2020 NBA Finals. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

He was only on the bench for 40 seconds and was toiling out on the court for almost the whole game. Along with points, he led the team in rebounds and assists too and had a triple-double. He also had five steals, which made him the 2nd player since Gary Payton to record 35+ points, 10+ rebounds, 10+ assists, and 5+steals in a Finals game.

Although he wasn’t able to stop LeBron James on defense, he made the big plays which ensured the win. It was a constant back and forth between these two, and despite LeBron scoring more, Jimmy scored when it mattered.

Los Angeles Lakers vs Miami Heat: LeBron James and Jimmy Butler
Oct 9, 2020; Lake Buena Vista, Florida, USA; Miami Heat forward Jimmy Butler (22) handles the ball against Los Angeles Lakers forward LeBron James (23) during the second quarter in game five of the 2020 NBA Finals at AdventHealth Arena. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

Heading into Game 6, Butler will be drained. But he will still give his 100% for the team without a doubt. Whenever he is on the court, no one wants it more than him. His drive is second to none and that will play a huge part in how the Heat performs on Sunday.

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