The Bulls suffered a humiliating defeat just last night, and it’s somewhat telling to see how they ‘respond’ to such games. The Heat are also on a back-to-back, though they had to travel. Like last night’s opponents, the Heat are out a key contributor (Bam Adebayo). All of a sudden this looks like an important game!
It’s definitely an interesting one, because Jimmy Butler is on the other team. The Heat - who went to the dang NBA Finals but faltered to start this season - have won the last 7 games Jimmy has played in, and have been on a tear since his return overall:
In a pretty wild season so far, Butler has pretty much abandoned the 3-point line but is still getting free throws by the ton and somehow is sporting an assist percentage over 40%.
It’s always kind of notable when Butler plays his old team, maybe because Chicago beat writers won’t shut the hell up about it. Remember Zach LaVine outdueling him??? I mean, we remember it because the Bulls have had so few meaningful games. Though who am I kidding, the king of corny competitiveness in Butler likely remembers as well.
The first one was in 2018, a Bulls win as Butler’s game-winning attempt at the buzzer missed. Then in 2019 when Butler was a Sixer the Bulls maybe secured Jim Boylen’s greatest victory with another one-point win.
Then, uh...the Bulls were beat twice by Butler’s Heat and I don’t remember either, strange it’s like I lobotomized myself to completely forget last season.
Besides Bam, Miami is also missing Avery Bradley
For the Bulls, looks like everyone is healthy and available, except Chandler Hutchison who is ‘participating’ by putting on a uniform, which is technically progress.
Game Time: This start time is pushed back unfortunately, an 8pm central tip. NBC Sports Chicago.