There was absolutely no one that could’ve contained Miami Heat star Jimmy Butler in this season’s first-round matchup with the Milwaukee Bucks. That is, if you ask Bucks All-Defensive guard Jrue Holiday.
During an appearance on “Sideline Stroll with Ros“, Holiday opened up about his matchup with Butler in the opening round.
“A lot of plays Jimmy made, there was nothing that I could do,” Holiday told host Ros Gold-Onwud. “There’s nothing that anybody could do. It didn’t matter if it was Brook [Lopez] on him, if it was LeBron James or Michael Jordan on him. It didn’t matter who was on him. Jimmy was playing at a different level.”
Butler absolutely had his way with Holiday over the final two games of the series, totaling 96 points in Games 4 & 5. According to NBA.com’s matchup tracking data, Holiday was the primary defender on the 33-year-old for 55.9 partial possessions in Game 5. On those possessions he allowed Butler to score 17 points on 7-of-12 shooting. On top of that, the Heat as a team poured in 64 points while Holiday covered their No. 22.
It was a trend that carried over from Game 4. Of course, that was the night that Miami’s star wing pouring in the fourth-most points in single-game playoff history with 56. The numbers were pretty similar to those from Game 5. Butler made 6-of-11 attempts while covered by Holiday for 18 points on 56.7 partial possessions.
Butler let Holiday know that he had no chance of stopping him. Late in the fourth quarter of Game 5, the six-time All-Star could be seen jawing at Milwaukee’s No. 21, telling him “I own you.”
Gabe Vincent to Miss Heat’s Game 5 vs. Celtics
While Butler may have been shouldering most of the scoring load in the series against the Bucks, he’s had a bit more hope in the Eastern Conference Finals against the Boston Celtics.
Players like Gabe Vincent and Caleb Martin have stepped up for the Heat, helping them to open up a 3-1 lead over Boston.
Unfortunatley, Miami will have to try and close out the series Thursday night without Vincent, who’s been their third leading-scorer in this series.
“Development: Miami’s Gabe Vincent is listed out for Game 5 vs. Boston tonight with an ankle sprain,” The Athletic’s Shams Charania reported on Thursday morning.
Again, Vincent has played a huge role in Miami’s success against the Celtics, averaging 17.5 points per game, while shooting a ridiculous 57.9% from the field and 50.0% from beyond the arc.
Jaylen Brown Issues Statement on Heat’s Role Players
As great as Vincent has been, Martin has been even better. His offensive output jumped up from 10.8 points per game over the opening two series, to 18.5 points per game against the Celtics, while shooting an insane 63.8% from the field.
Celtics forward Jaylen Brown spoke about the stamp that players like Vincent and Martin have put on this series, saying that they’re “playing well above their means.”
“To their credit, they’re playing well above their means,” Brown said about the Heat after Game 3, via CBS Sports. “They balling right now, and I’ve got to give them respect. Gabe Vincent, Martin, Strus, Duncan Robinson, guys that we should be able to keep under control are playing their a** off.”