The Los Angeles Lakers came into Game 5 ready to win their franchise’s 17th NBA championship, and for LeBron James, his fourth NBA title.
Jimmy Butler had other plans.
With the Miami Heat’s season on the line, Butler stepped up and went shot for shot with James late in a fourth quarter that saw numerous lead changes and big-time plays made by both sides.
Butler’s clutch free throws late and a key turnover by Markieff Morris eventually clinched a Game 5 win for the Heat, 111-108.
Throughout the game and after the buzzer sounded, reactions poured in from throughout the NBA universe.
With the game tied at 101-101, Butler and James began trading buckets, with a possible title hanging in the balance for the Lakers.
Terrence Ross was all of us during the final moments.
With the Lakers down one, James had the ball in his hands and an opportunity to try for a series-winning shot, but the Heat’s defense forced the ball out of his hands to a wide-open Danny Green. Green’s 3 was short and Morris turned the ball over to ensure we get a Game 6 on Sunday. Afterward, players like CJ McCollum shared their thoughts on the pivotal moment.
Butler notched another historic triple-double with 35 points, 12 rebounds and 11 assists, outdueling James, who went for 40 points and 13 rebounds in the Lakers loss. The net result: Heat legend Dwyane Wade was clearly stressed out.
After the game, players showed love for Butler’s heroics.
Finally, we’ll leave this tweet here from the Heat, who aren’t going anywhere.
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