Latest NBA Leads

Jimmy Butler Was Apparently Waiting in the Hallway to Fight a Coach

By Stephen Douglas
Orlando Magic v Charlotte Bobcats
Orlando Magic v Charlotte Bobcats / Streeter Lecka/GettyImages
facebooktwitter

Nikola Jokic took a sledgehammer to Heat Culture on Monday night when he retaliated against a cheap shot from Markieff Morris with an even cheaper shot. While Jokic walked away, feeling bad about hurting Morris and his team, Miami and its fans screamed into the void. (With the Jokic brothers listening intently.) The most prominent shouter was Jimmy Butler who was shown telling someone to meet him in back. Anyone who watched events unfold should have figured Butler was not looking for a piece of Jokic, but now we know who drew Butler's ire - one of the Nuggets assistant coaches.

Via Sam Amick of The Athletic:

If nothing else, there’s this small solace for the Joker when it comes to all this acrimony: While it certainly looked as if the Heat’s Jimmy Butler was also coming for him during the chaos, when he could be seen yelling ‘Bring your ass to the back!’” and the Twitter folks deduced that he was challenging Nikola to a good, old-fashioned brawl, a source with knowledge of the situation said Butler was actually furious with Nuggets player development coach and former NBA player Stephen Graham.

Graham was probably the guy who got to Butler as coaches and security tried to break up the scrum. Unable or unwilling to go after the person who actually appeared to hurt his teammate, Butler instead created a new confrontation with a coach. That's who Butler was waiting for in the hallway.

As you can see in the picture above, Graham is no stranger to rough stuff. That picture at the top of this article shows Graham getting physical with Marcin Gortat two years before Jimmy Butler was drafted. Graham played for seven teams between 2005 and 2011 and has been coaching since 2015. At six-foot-six, Graham is certainly a more desirably opponent for Butler, who had a chance to speak with Jokic in the immediate aftermath of his altercation with Morris, but declined.

facebooktwitter