Heat’s Jimmy Butler speaks out on James Harden trade rumors
Houston Rockets superstar James Harden is currently doing what Miami Heat small forward Jimmy Butler did with the Minnesota Timberwolves back in 2018-19.
Before the 2018-19 season started, Butler requested a trade from the Timberwolves. The All-Star swingman appeared in 10 games with Minnesota in 2018-19 before the franchise traded him to the Philadelphia 76ers.
Butler only lasted 55 games with the Sixers, as he decided to sign with the Heat in the summer of 2019 during free agency.
Harden, the 2018 MVP, has requested a trade from the Rockets with the 2020-21 season set to start on Dec. 22. The three-time scoring champion reportedly wants to get traded to the Brooklyn Nets, but Harden has also told the Rockets he’s fine with getting dealt to the Sixers, Heat and Milwaukee Bucks as well.
No stranger to trade drama, Butler told Rachel Nichols of ESPN, via the South Florida Sun Sentinel’s Ira Winderman, that he wants Harden to be happy. However, it appears the Texas native is content with the group he has around him on the Heat.
Jimmy Butler to ESPN’s Rachel Nichols on James Harden, “There’s a lot of stuff always in the media. I think that he’s a hell of player. I like the group we have. To tell you the truth, I just want the guy to be happy. That’s what life is about. That’s what the game is about.”
— Ira Winderman (@IraHeatBeat) December 10, 2020
For the Heat to acquire James Harden, president Pat Riley would have to gut the roster around Jimmy Butler since The Beard is one of the best players in the NBA.
Since Miami got to the Finals last season with Butler and Bam Adebayo leading the way, Riley may do some due diligence on a Harden trade, but ultimately decide to pass.
The Heat gave Adebayo a lucrative rookie-scale extension this offseason. The franchise also re-signed veteran point guard Goran Dragic in unrestricted free agency.
While it would be fun to watch Harden and Butler play together, the odds of it happening are probably low.
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