Morning Sports Update

‘We know that we can win’: Jimmy Butler said the Heat remain confident despite facing elimination

Butler added that his knee injury from earlier in the series was "no excuse."

Jimmy Butler Game 5
Jimmy Butler during the first half of Game 5 of the Eastern Conference finals. AP Photo/Lynne Sladky

The Celtics defeated the Heat 93-80 in Game 5 of the Eastern Conference finals in Miami on Wednesday night. Boston now leads in the series 3-2 thanks in large part to Jaylen Brown’s second half surge.

The series moves back to Boston, with Game 6 set to tip off at TD Garden on Friday at 8:30 p.m. A win will put the Celtics into the NBA Finals.

In Chicago, the Red Sox were beaten by the White Sox 3-1, ending Boston’s six-game winning streak.

Also on Wednesday, the Revolution lost to New York City FC 1-0 in extra time in the U.S. Open Cup.


Jimmy Butler’s response after the Heat’s Game 5 loss: For the second game in a row in the Eastern Conference finals, the Celtics were able close out a win by a comfortable margin.

The Heat, by contrast, once again struggled to score, shooting just 7-for-45 from 3-point range (15.6 percent).

After the game, Heat forward Jimmy Butler grappled with Miami’s new reality: Win in Boston on Friday night, or face playoff elimination.

“Besides the fact that anything is possible, we know what we are capable of,” Butler told reporters. “We know we can play some really good basketball and we know that we are going to play some really good basketball.

“It’s going to have to start in this next game up in Boston,” Butler added. “But I just think that we know that we can win.”

Butler’s performances in Game 4 and 5 have mirrored his team’s problems. Over that time, he’s shot a combined 7-for-32 from the field, managing just 20 points in two games.

One possible explanation for his recent slump could be the lingering effects of a knee injury Butler sustained in Game 3 (which caused him to miss the entire second half in an eventual Miami win).

When asked if the injury was limiting his play, Butler had a characteristic response.


“It doesn’t matter,” he explained. “If I’m out there, I’ve got to do better. I’ve got to find a way to help us win, and I haven’t been doing that. I’m fine. My knee is okay. I’ve just got to do better. It’s no excuse.”

Trivia: The Heat is Jimmy Butler’s fourth team in his NBA career. Can you name the other three?

(Answer at the bottom).

Hint: Three Eastern Conference, one Western Conference.

More from

Jayson Tatum’s postgame press conference:

Revolution goalkeeper Djordje Petrović’s double-save: The 22-year-old helped keep a clean sheet for the first 90 minutes, though New England eventually conceded in extra time.

On this day: In 1999, Manchester United completed a historic treble — winning the Premier League, the FA Cup, and the UEFA Champions League — with a dramatic comeback against Bayern Munich.

Trailing 1-0 in stoppage time in the Champions League final, United scored two goals in the final seconds to emerge with a legendary win.

English commentator Clive Tyldesley’s call of Ole Gunnar Solskjær’s winning goal still stands out decades later, as does Sir Alex Ferguson’s iconically succinct summary of the game afterwards.


“Football,” said Ferguson. “Bloody hell.”

Daily highlight: Nathan MacKinnon’s coast-to-coast goal for the Avalanche was also worthy of inclusion here, but today’s highlight could only be one thing.

Trivia answer: Bulls, Timberwolves, 76ers, Heat


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