The newest member of the Miami Heat family is Jimmy Butler.
Butler made it clear he wanted to play for the Heat when both parties met when free agency began on Sunday. He is expected to sign a four-year, $142 million deal.
Butler, also known as “Jimmy Buckets” is taking his talents to Miami in a four-team deal that involves the Heat, Philadelphia 76ers, LA Clippers, and Portland Trail Blazers. The trade, which was first reported by ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski.
The deal reportedly will send Hassan Whiteside to the Trail Blazers, Josh Richardson to the Sixers, Maurice Harkless and a future first-round pick to the Clippers, and Meyers Leonard to the Heat.
“It’s the culture that I hear about all the time. The work that you put in every single day, the winning habits, the winning ways,” Butler said at his introductory press conference. “When I keep hearing about this culture, I said I need that in my life.”
Butler averaged 18.2 points, 5.3 rebounds, and 4.0 assists in 55 regular-season games with the Sixers, shooting 46.1 percent from the field and 33.8 percent from three.
But his two-way play and clutch gene are massive additions for Miami, which is now one step closer to being a title contender.
In the meantime, the Heat has added a four-time All-Star who also earned four All-Defensive Second Team nods in his eight seasons, Butler wields a two-way skill set that has long been held in high regard.
“Everybody here wants everybody to be great,” Butler said.
Butler would give the Heat their first superstar since the glory days of Dwyane Wade, and the team’s title runs with LeBron James and Chris Bosh. Questions will arise about how Pat Riley and the front office will build around Butler.
All three of the players involved in the Miami-Portland trade have expiring contracts this season.
The 29-year-old had an uncanny 2018-19 season, essentially forcing his way out of Minnesota; he was traded to Philadelphia.
He was one of two major midseason acquisitions for the Sixers alongside Tobias Harris, and he showed his worth almost immediately, providing a solid two-way game and the ability to close out contests with some clutch performances and game-winning shots.
The Heat will once again have a path toward title contention if one more star player is added.