Jimmy Butler opted to move to South Beach this past offseason, inking a four-year, $140 million deal with the Miami Heat after spending nearly a full year with the Philadelphia 76ers.
On Wednesday, Butler finally opened up about his short time in Philadelphia — and it didn’t make coach Brett Brown or the organization as a whole look very good.
“Hell yeah, it was difficult. It was so different," Butler said on The JJ Redick Podcast with Tommy Alter on Wednesday. "On any given day, me as a person, as a player, I didn’t know who the f--k was in charge. I think that was my biggest thing.
“I didn’t know what the f--k to expect whenever I would go into the gym, whenever I go onto the plane, whenever I go into the game. I was like, man. I think I was as lost as the next motherf---er.”
Butler was traded just 10 games into the 2018-19 season from Minnesota to Philadelphia. He averaged 18.2 points and 5.3 rebounds in 55 games with the Sixers while leading them to the Eastern Conference semifinals.
Butler said he realized what was going on during a team meeting where “nothing got accomplished, at all.” He remembered walking out of that meeting with Redick, who was on the 76ers at the time, and asked him, “JJ, why would I ever go back in there again? Nothing’s getting accomplished. Nobody’s saying nothing to anybody, and we’re just sitting in here watching film and you can literally hear the [remote] just clicking.”
But Butler didn’t want to say anything.
“I’m sitting back and relaxing thinking, ‘These motherf---ers think I’m an assh--e anyways, let me be quiet,’” Butler said.
He made it clear on the show that he didn’t work well with Brown, who is now in his seventh season with the team, and knew that he was a big reason why Butler couldn’t return the next season — especially after the team reportedly asked Brown if he could “control” Butler.
“For one, I ain’t just out there doing no bulls--t,” Butler said. “But the fact that you are trying to control a grown man. Nah, I’m cool, because I don’t do nothing that is drastically f---ing stupidly crazy. I don’t know that. So sit here and come at me with, ‘Oh, we gotta try and control him.’
“We good. Don’t even worry about it.”
The decision to go to Miami, Butler said, was easy after he realized how different the culture within the organization truly was.
“That’s how I think. I don’t know what the hell I’m going to do tomorrow. Yesterday’s gone, but right now, I’m going to be the best version of me that I can be,” Butler said. “That’s how Miami does it. I don’t know how every other team does it … but Miami is way different [than the other team’s I’ve played for].”
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