Jimmy Butler, a noted Boston Celtics postseason killer during both the 2020 and 2022 Eastern Conference finals, will be back for the Miami Heat when the two teams play on November 30 and December 2 at the T.D. Garden.
The matchups will be the second and third this season following the C’s October 21 111-104 victory at the soon-to-be-renamed FTX Arena. The final matchup will take place on January 24 in South Beach.
Butler has been out of action since November 16 with a right knee injury. Without him, Miami has split their last six games — losing the first three and winning their last three matchups against the Washington Wizards (2x) and Atlanta Hawks.
Ira Winderman of the Sun Sentinel gave the details of Butler’s injury return timetable:
“With Jimmy Butler missing his fifth consecutive game due to soreness in his right knee Friday against the visiting Washington Wizards, the expectation is that he will be back in time for the Miami Heat’s two games next week against the Boston Celtics.”
Jimmy Butler’s right knee injury aided Boston Celtics 2022 postseason run
If not for the same right knee injury that plagues Jimmy Butler to this day, the Boston Celtics could have had an even tougher road — one that may have even proven insurmountable for all we know — during the 2022 Eastern Conference finals. Butler was a Cs killer during the 2020 bubble postseason’s penultimate round, going for 22 points and eight assists in the decisive Game 6, and followed that up with three 35+ point performances during the 2022 postseason.
This season, the Heat have not proven to be the same level of contender quite yet, with elite stat lines from Tyler Herro and Bam Adebayo translating to a top record. Miami could be a few moves away from being right back in the thick of things, though, and shouldn’t be discounted just yet.
Perhaps the Heat could get back in the thick of things with a blockbuster trade closer to the deadline, but their roster is accomplished enough to not need anything but a few momentum-building wins — and Butler’s return could certainly be a catalyst for such against the Boston Celtics next week.