The Jimmy Butler era in Miami is going to be delayed by at least one game. The Heat have announced that their All-Star acquisition will not play in the season opener tonight.
Butler, who joined the Heat via a sign-and-trade in free agency this summer, will not be playing in tonight's game. He is out due to personal reasons.
"Jimmy Butler not with Heat tonight due to personal reasons," the Heat announced.
Butler, 30, is coming off a season with the Philadelphia 76ers in which he averaged 18.2 points, 5.3 rebounds and 4.0 assists per game.
Butler was extremely excited to join the Heat this summer. The All-Star guard is one of the most-intense players in the NBA and is looking forward to truly leading his own team.
“We’ve got some dogs,” Butler said of the Heat. “We’ve got some guys that have something to prove every single day. Not just in a game, but out here in practice. Guys that are competing, not scared of anybody in a Heat jersey, not scared of anybody that’s not in a Heat jersey. That’s what I love about it. You know each and every day, each and every game, we’re going to fight, man. And I’m proud of that. I’m happy about that.”
The Heat will have to win tonight's season opener without their lead dog, though.
Miami and Memphis are set to tip off at 7:30 p.m. E.T.