Jimmy Butler has last laugh at ’76s: ‘Tobias Harris is over me’

This was a sweet win for Jimmy Butler, and he didn’t try to hide how happy he was to be his former team.

“Tobias Harris about me. Tobias Harris on me,” Butler crowed as he walked into the locker room after scoring 32 points to lead the Miami Heat into the Eastern Conference Finals thanks to a 99-90 win over the 76ers in Game 6 Thursday night Philadelphia.

Butler was traded to the 76ers by the Minnesota Timberwolves midway through the 2018-19 season, but Philadelphia decided to part ways with the Star Guard at the end of that season, opting to build around Ben Simmons and Joel Embiid.

The 76ers also opted to give Tobias Harris, who they also traded for mid-2019, to a five-year, $180 million contract. Harris scored 14 points and eight rebounds in the loss.

After the loss, Embiid sounded disappointed that the 76ers hadn’t kept Butler.

Jimmy Butler
Jimmy Butler

“I still don’t know how we let him go,” Embiid said. “I wish I could have fought with him anyway.”

The Sixers parted ways with Butler in large part because they chose Simmons as their cornerstone ballhandler. Simmons was unlucky and forced a trade to the Brooklyn Nets for James Harden that season.

Harden, a three-time scoring champion, should shoulder the burden for a powerful postseason push with Embiid. Harden pretty much disappeared in the playoffs instead. He had a fantastic Game 4 at home against Miami but was otherwise a sales machine.

“Now I’m where I belong,” said Butler, who also led the Heat to the NBA Finals a few years ago, where they lost to the Lakers in six games. “Guess where I should have been by now.”

— with AP Jimmy Butler has last laugh at ’76s: ‘Tobias Harris is over me’


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