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Jimmy Butler had another performance that will be remembered for a long time as he once again singlehandedly kept the Miami Heat’s hopes alive by towing the team to a 111-108 win against the Los Angeles Lakers.
(Photo : Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports)
Jimmy Butler had another performance that will be remembered for a long time as he once again singlehandedly kept the Miami Heat’s hopes alive by towing the team to a 111-108 Game 5 win against the Los Angeles Lakers on Friday, October 9.
The Lakers had LeBron James, arguably one of the best players in the NBA history, but that did not matter to Jimmy Butler. He exploded with another triple-double to keep Miami Heat in contention in the NBA Finals.
Butler finished with 35 points, 12 rebounds, and 11 assists just five days after he also dished out a triple-double performance to also keep the Miami Heat’s title hopes alive when they were down 2-0.
The All-Star wing also had five steals and one key block, all to outduel James and the Lakers, who absorbed their first loss while donning the “Mamba” jersey. They had never lost a game in that jersey until now.
According to the Miami Herald, it was one of the great individual duels in the NBA Finals history with James chasing his fourth and most unique NBA title while Butler was playing to extend the Finals series.
A year ago, Jimmy Butler had walked into the Heat’s practice gym, sat down, and said he wanted to be part of the Heat’s playoffs campaign.
And, he was not kidding as he scored eight of the final 10 points of the Miami Heat to thwart the Lakers from clinching their 17th NBA title, a title that they have been longing for since 2010.
Both James and Butler came out hungry at the start of Game 5 but seemed to lose steam in the second half of the ballgame with Butler not managing to score starting in the middle of the third quarter.
Fortunately for Jimmy Butler, James also just managed five points in the first six minutes of the fourth quarter.
Butler’s scoring drought continued, but his all-around game helped keep the Lakers at bay. He finally started scoring again with just 1:51 remaining in the ballgame. From there, he engaged James in a one on one and came out on top to put the Heat past Lakers.
The NBA Finals have now been extended to Game 6 on Sunday, October 11, with the Lakers leading the series, 3-2.
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