How Celtics Reacted To Standout Game 6 From Heat Star Jimmy Butler

Butler scored 47 points to fend off elimination


May 28, 2022

BOSTON — Jimmy “Buckets” Butler was well-deserving of the nickname Friday as the Miami Heat star put together an admirable performance to fend off elimination in Game 6 of the Eastern Conference finals against the Boston Celtics.

Butler finished with a game-high 47 points as he came just shy of a triple-double with nine rebounds and eight assists. Butler scored 14 of those 47 points in the first quarter as he made six of his first 10 shots from the field to go along with three 3-pointers in the first half.

“The threes — he’s been off this series from three. He came out and hit three-for-three, goes four-for-eight on the night,” Celtics head coach Ime Udoka said of Butler after Boston’s 111-103 defeat. “We adjusted from there, and got better as the night went on. But his aggressiveness, getting to the free throw line — 11-for-11 — that usually indicates that he’s being aggressive and playing well. Matching his intensity from the start, it wasn’t there.”

Boston limited Butler to 19 points combined in Games 4 and 5, both contests which the Celtics won. In three of the five games entering Friday, the Celtics limited Butler to 13 points or less. Friday was a much different story, however, similar to Butler’s 41-point contest in Game 1.

“He put his head down, got to the basket, way too many easy shots or point-blank layups,” Udoka added. “Just poor defense on our part on him, when we had done really good in the past.”

Butler’s performance was superior to stars representing the Celtics like Jayson Tatum or Jaylen Brown. Tatum and Brown, of note, took merely one shot each during the fourth quarter.

“We could have made some of those a little bit tougher for him,” Tatum said of Butler. “But I give him his credit, he played extremely well tonight for his team.”

Butler shot a brutal 23% from beyond the arc this season. His eight attempts were the most he’s shot this postseason while his four makes tied the most in a single game this postseason, as well.

“He just had it rolling. Made a lot of shots that on film, we’ll live with,” Jaylen Brown said. “Tonight he came out and he was aggressive. He played like his back was on the wall and he had an amazing game. We just had no answers for him tonight. We’ve got to do a better job — we will do a better job on Sunday.”

The Celtics will face the Heat in a winner-take-all Game 7 on Sunday. Tipoff from FTX Arena is set for 8:30 p.m. ET.

Thumbnail photo via Brian Fluharty/USA TODAY Sports Images
Boston Celtics guard Jaylen Brown
Previous Article

Stars Lack Assertiveness In Closeout Game & Now It Has Celtics On Brink

Boston Bruins forward Brad Marchand
Next Article

What Brad Marchand’s Injury Means For Bruins Going Into 2022-23 NHL Season

Picked For You