The Eastern Conference’s top playoff seed is not represented on this season’s All-NBA teams.
The Miami Heat did not have a player earn an All-NBA honor after Jimmy Butler was voted onto the All-NBA Third Team in each of his first two seasons with the organization. The Heat is the first top playoff seed from either conference to not have a player selected for an All-NBA team since the top-seeded Atlanta Hawks weren’t represented in the 2014-15 season.
Extending it out even further, the Heat is the sixth No. 1 seed since the playoffs expanded in the 1983-84 season to not have a player voted onto one of the All-NBA teams. The 2014-15 Hawks, 2011-12 Chicago Bulls, 1999-2000 Indiana Pacers, 1993-94 Hawks and 1988-89 Detroit Pistons are the others.
Butler, 32, received zero First-Team votes, two Second-Team votes and 26 Third-Team votes to come in as the seventh-place forward. He just missed the cut as the top six forwards were named to an All-NBA team, finishing behind First-Team selections Giannis Antetokounmpo of the Milwaukee Bucks and Jayson Tatum of the Boston Celtics, Second-Team selections Kevin Durant of the Brooklyn Nets and DeMar DeRozan of the Bulls, and Third-Team selections LeBron James of the Los Angeles Lakers and Pascal Siakam of the Toronto Raptors.
Center Bam Adebayo, who was the Heat’s only player to make one of the NBA’s All-Defensive Teams this season, received zero First-Team votes, four Second-Team votes and 16 Third-Team votes to come in as the fifth-place center. The top three centers were named to an All-NBA team, with Adebayo finishing behind First-Team selection Nikola Jokic of the Denver Nuggets, Second-Team selection Joel Embiid of the Philadelphia 76ers, Third-Team selection Karl-Anthony Towns of the Minnesota Timberwolves, and fourth-place Rudy Gobert of the Utah Jazz.
Adebayo and Butler were the only two Heat players who received All-NBA votes this season.
Despite missing the cut this season, Butler is one of six different Heat players who have been voted onto an All-NBA team in franchise history: Tim Hardaway (First Team in 1996-97 and Second Team in 1997-98 and 1998-99), Alonzo Mourning (First Team in 1998-99 and Second Team in 1999-00), Shaquille O’Neal (First Team in 2004-05 and 2005-06), Dwyane Wade (First Team in 2008-09 and 2009-10, Second Team in 2004-05, 2005-06 and 2010-11 and Third Team in 2006-07, 2011-12 and 2012-13), LeBron James (First Team in 2010-11, 2011-12, 2012-13 and 2013-14) and Butler (Third Team in 2019-20 and 2020-21).
The All-NBA First Team included Antetokounmpo, Dallas’ Luka Doncic, Jokic, Phoenix’s Devin Booker and Tatum.
The All-NBA Second Team is made up of Embiid, Memphis’ Ja Morant, Durant, Golden State’s Stephen Curry and DeRozan.
The All-NBA Third Team features Towns, Atlanta’s Trae Young, James, Phoenix’s Chris Paul and Siakam.
The All-NBA teams were selected by a panel of 100 media members, who select two guards, two forwards and one center for each of the First, Second and Third teams. Voting concluded at the end of the regular season and prior to the start of the playoffs.
Butler missed 25 games this regular season, but he was again the Heat’s best player through it all. He averaged a team-high 21.4 points while shooting 48 percent from the field to go with 5.9 rebounds, 5.5 assists and 1.6 steals per game this regular season.
Butler was one of only six NBA players who averaged at least 21 points, five rebounds, five assists and one steal while shooting 48 percent or better from the field in the regular season, along with All-NBA selections James, Antetokounmpo, Morant, Jokic and Siakam.
Butler has elevated his play to an even higher level this postseason. He enters Wednesday’s Game 5 averaged 26.5 points on 51.8 percent shooting from the field, 7.2 rebounds, 4.6 assists and two steals per game in the playoffs to help carry the Heat to the conference finals.
Adebayo missed 26 games this regular season. The versatile big man who is known as one of the NBA’s top defensive weapons averaged a career-high 19.1 points to go with 10.1 rebounds, 3.4 assists, 1.4 steals and 0.8 blocks per game in his fifth NBA season.
Only four NBA players finished the regular season averaging at least 19 points, 10 rebounds and three assists: Adebayo, Jokic, Embiid and Antetokounmpo. Adebayo is the only one in that group who was not voted onto an All-NBA team.