Jimmy Butler still remembers the teams that gave up on him originally appeared on NBC Sports Chicago
Jimmy Butler motivates himself by remembering the teams that let him go and his start with the Bulls.
Jimmy Butler of the Miami Heat is up 3-1 on the defending Eastern Conference Champion Boston Celtics and on the verge of heading to his second NBA Finals. For Bulls fans, one has to think: What if Butler stayed in Chicago? Would it be the Bulls heading to a second Finals trip?
This conversation was brought up in the latest Bulls Talk Podcast with Bulls Insider K.C. Johnson and Ira Winderman, the Heat beat reporter for the Ft. Lauderdale Sun-Sentinel.
“If you didn’t want him. Or if you couldn’t win with him, that’s your fault!”
Winderman discussed Butler’s mindset to teams that didn’t believe in him, and to Butler’s credit, he has mainly been proven right. Everywhere he has gone, he has brought a winning attitude with him.
That’s not to say he’s a perfect player or teammate. He often grinds on an organization, which can lead to a very contentious environment if not appropriately funneled. However, if honed correctly, it could lead to a winning culture and success.
During his time with the Bulls, he once famously clashed with former coach Fred Hoiberg, asking him to “coach harder.”
Winderman said, “So it’s your fault Fred Hoiberg, who I think Jimmy blames more than anything.”
Winderman also acknowledges how Butler partially attributes his mentality to his start with coach Tom Thibodeau and the Bulls. Winderman explains Butler’s respect for Thibodeau after beating the New York Knicks in the Eastern Conference semifinals.
“You can see so much respect for Thibs and what Thibs did,” Winderman said. “That Thibs didn’t hand him something. He had to earn it in Chicago.”
The “earn it” mentality fuels Butler, and it still lives in him today. As Butler attempts to make a second trip to the NBA Finals with the Miami Heat, you have to wonder: What if the Bulls were able to hone his personality?
To hear the complete conversation between K.C. Johnson and Ira Winderman, check out the full episode of the Bulls Talk Podcast