According to a report from Sports Illustrated, there was some trash talk that came from some members of the Miami Heat during the team’s Game 3 victory against LeBron James and the Los Angeles Lakers. The Heat’s Jimmy Butler had an impressive night and was able to record a 40-point triple-double, being only one of three players to ever do so in an NBA Finals. The only other players in history to accomplish the same were LeBron James in 2015 and Jerry West in 1969. After Butler hit a seemingly impossible running bank shot in the fourth quarter to put the Heat up 109-100, he walked toward his opponents’ bench and threw some shade.
“You’re in trouble,” Butler said.
Following accusations that he was being a little disrespectful, Butler made a statement after the club’s win in which he argued he was just throwing James’ words back at him.
“LeBron said that to me at the end of the first. That’s what happened. I just said it to him in the fourth quarter,” he said.
Despite the standout performance from the Miami star, James said that he is not worried at all about the upcoming contests in the series. He also stated that he doesn’t let other players’ chatter get to his head anymore, as he has had tons of experience competing for a championship, according to ESPN.
“Throughout the postseason, I stay even-keel. As I’ve grown in this game and I’ve grown over the years, I kind of stay even-keel, understanding that there’s always another opportunity to get better,” James said in an interview after the squad’s loss.
The Lakers superstar also admitted that he did not play his best in the last matchup and that he takes full responsibility while also using it to be better prepared for the upcoming face-off.
As far as throwing shade, James said that he tries to let the way he plays speak for itself.
“I’ve always been a guy who kind of let his game do the talking. But when guys get to talking, I can do that as well. I’ve always tried to let my game do the talking,” he stated.
It’s not just James who is confident the Lakers will overcome the temporary setback. Key teammates like Anthony Davis and Danny Green also provided statements to the media that exuded confidence for Los Angeles to bounce back on Monday. The squad is now only two wins away from winning the organization’s 17th NBA Finals ring.