Dwight Howard will not want to go to Miami anytime soon after delivering two hard fouls to Jimmy Butler during Game 5 of the NBA Finals.
Howard had more fouls (3) than points (2) or rebounds (2) in his 15 minutes played during the Los Angeles Lakers‘ 111-108 loss, including a flagrant foul on Butler in the third quarter where he whacked him in the head on a putback attempt. The duo also got tangled up in the first quarter, resulting in a brief scuffle.
Rapper Rick Ross, a Miami Heat super fan, didn’t take too kindly to Howard’s actions and called him out in a social media post.
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“All my homies on the West Coast, y’all are really excited. You got the Black Mamba jerseys on — I get it. RIP to the legend Kobe,” Ross said in an Instagram Live video. “But that still don’t get you past this L. Dwight Howard, I won’t forgive you for that. I saw that f— s—- you just tried. It won’t work. … Ain’t no trophy tonight.”
Rick Ross Predicted Heat Comeback Prior to Game 5
The Heat pulled the series to 3-2 with the win and are making supporters of the purple and gold very nervous. Butler was barely able to walk off the podium after playing 47 minutes and delivering 35 points, 12 rebounds and 11 assists.
“I left it all out there on the floor along with my guys, and that’s how we’re going to have to play from here on out,” Butler said after the game. “But this is the position that we’re in. We like it this way. We got two more in a row to get.”
It’s no wonder Rick Ross wants Howard to keep his mitts off Butler.
Ross predicted the Heat would comeback behind “Jimmy Jesus” during an appearance on ESPN’s First Take on Thursday.
“Congratulations if y’all pull it off, but don’t be surprised if Jimmy Jesus brings it home,” Ross said on First Take on Thursday. “I’ve watched LeBron do this before. I’ve seen him get up two games and lose the series, and I’m talking Finals guys. We’ve seen this. We’ve got a young team. Young Bam, we got Herro. Come on man, we got Robinson and the Dragon. And Jimmy Jesus.”
Lakers, LeBron James Want to Stay Even-Keeled
The loss was the first time James had not closed out an opponent in a potential clinching game in the NBA Finals.
“I mean for me, I’ve always stayed even-keeled,” James told reporters after the loss. “You know, throughout the highs, throughout the lows, you stay even-keeled and get better with the process. You stay in the moment, which I am, and understanding that we can be better. And how we make the adjustments and how we learn from tonight, tomorrow in our film session and when we get together and prepare ourselves for Sunday, will show the difference.”
Lakers head coach Frank Vogel took exception to some late foul calls that put Butler at the line, sealing the game for Miami.
“They were given four free throws and made it an uphill battle for us,” Vogel said in his postgame press conference. “Very disappointed in that aspect of the game, but our group’s fine. We’re going to bounce back strong. We’ll have a better performance in Game 6, and we’ve got to play better for the 48 minutes leading up to that last minute.”
The Lakers opened as 5-point favorites for Game 6.