Jimmy Butler Got Choked by Naji Marshall During Heat-Pelicans Fight

Jimmy Butler
Jimmy Butler /

Last night was certainly an entertaining one across the Association as two separate NBA games had to be halted due to scuffles on the floor between the teams in question. While the Golden State Warriors' beef with the Charlotte Hornets will command most of the attention because it was caused by the wonderful world of "unwritten rules," the Miami Heat-New Orleans Pelicans debacle should not be ignored.

Let's set the scene. The Heat were leading the Pelicans by four early in the fourth quarter, locked in a competitive matchup in their first contests after the All-Star Break. Zion Williamson swiped the ball from Jimmy Butler after a New Orleans miss and went up for the easy layup. Kevin Love fouled Williamson hard, but not aggressively so, wrapping up the Pelicans star and attempting to guide him to the ground. He was not so successful on that last part and Zion hit the deck. Love obviously wasn't trying to do anything dirty but Williamson's teammates were not pleased (understandably so) and ran over to have some words with Love.

Butler was right there and ended up getting into a shoving match with Naji Marshall as both men defended their teammates. Marshall then locked eyes with Butler and grabbed him by the throat. Things quickly devolved from there.

Once the dust settled the referees tossed four players-- Butler, Marshall, Jose Alvarado, and Thomas Bryant. There will undoubtedly be some hefty fines and perhaps a suspension laid down as well. It came pretty close to being a real fight. It looks like Bryant and Alvarado were real close to exchanging hands by the scorer's table.

Basketball is back, baby. No more grousing about the All-Star Game. No more MVP back-and-forths (for a little bit) (please). We're going to get a 10-minute A-block segment about Jimmy Butler getting choked on First Take on Monday and it will be glorious.