James Harden Issues Statement After Being Bested by Heat

James Harden on the Philadelphia 76ers and Jimmy Butler of the Miami Heat.

Getty James Harden on the Philadelphia 76ers and Jimmy Butler of the Miami Heat.

The Miami Heat snapped a four-game losing streak on Monday night, when they edged out the Philadelphia 76ers 101-99. Heat star Jimmy Butler showed out in Philly. He nearly notched a triple-double, scoring 23 points, grabbing 11 rebounds, and dishing 9 assists. Butler was a menace on the defensive end too. The 33-year-old tallied 4 steals and played some tough defense on Sixers star James Harden.

According to the NBA’s matchup tracking, Butler covered harden for 2:49, which was the second highest total time, and didn’t let The Beard score at all. Harden missed all four of his attempts when covered by Miami’s No. 22.

The former Arizona State standout also failed to drill the game-winning shot as time expired, despite getting a great look.

After his team’s loss, Harden spoke to the media and discussed Miami’s aggression on the defensive end.

“Some of it was us,” Harden said via Keith Pompey of the Philadelphia Inquirer. “Some of it was them. They were aggressive the entire night, and did a good job of pressuring the basketball, and forcing some of them. And some of them were just careless.”

Heat’s Jimmy Butler is ‘Tired of Losing’

Butler’s performance against his former team was inspired to say the very least. Again, ahead of Monday’s win, the Heat had lost four straight games. Most recently, they had dropped a game against the Charlotte Hornets, who have the fourth-worst record in the NBA.

Following the loss in Charlotte, Butler told the media that he was “tired of losing.”

“We lost. It don’t matter what quarter it was in, man, we lost. I’m tired of losing,” Butler vented to reporters. “You’re not getting no stops, man, not getting no stops, shots not going in and then it’s all downhill from there.”

He continued on his postgame rant, warning that Miami needed to get back on track, sooner rather than later.

“We lost — I don’t care if we were down 30 or we lose about 30 or lose by one; we lost. And I don’t think anybody in here wants to lose but we’ve got to figure this out very, very quickly.”

Bucks Coach Shares Praise for Bam Adebayo After Downing Heat

Butler had good reason to be frustrated after falling to the lowly Hornets. The day prior, he and the Heat got their doors blown off in their first game back from the All-Star break. They fell to the surging Milwaukee Bucks, 129-99.

Milwaukee’s head coach Mike Budenholzer spoke with the media after his team’s comfortable victory. He shared some thoughts on Bam Adebayo, after being asked about Miami’s lone All-Star.

“I think he’s clearly more aggressive, he’s looking to attack, he’s looking to drive. But, (he takes) a lot of tough twos, a lot of shots around the elbows,” Coach Bud told reporters. “He’s really grown as a scorer, we’ve got to figure out if we can make it harder on him. But, to stay between him and the basket, to keep him off the offensive boards things like that, keep him off the free throw line mostly, those were some positives for defending Adebayo.”

Budenholzer’s Bucks kept Adebayo relatively quiet, holding him to 18 points on 17 shots.

Read More