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Jimmy Butler’s Accurate Prediction Comes True a Year Later As Miami Crushes Boston
- Miami Heat's Jimmy Butler has grabbed headline after headline in the 2023 NBA playoffs
- He capped a phenomenal run with the Eastern Conference title and the conference MVP award
- A prediction he made after last year's conference finals came true after they beat the Boston Celtics
On May 29, 2022, after the Miami Heat lost the Eastern Conference finals to the Boston Celtics, Jimmy Butler said they will be back, and they would get the job done.
His eerie prediction came true a year later after the Heat won Game 7 103-84 to reach their first NBA Finals since 2020.
In last season's Eastern Conference finals, the Celtics narrowly edged Butler and the Heat in seven games. They won Game 7 100-96 in Miami, booking their spot in the NBA Finals, which they lost in six games to the Golden State Warriors.
Butler met the Celtics again in the 2023 conference finals, this time as an 8th seed who took down favorites Milwaukee Bucks in the first round. In Game 7, it was evident early in the game that his precise prediction would come true as they destroyed the Celtics.
The 33-year-old finished with 28 points, seven rebounds, and six assists in 43 minutes. He also walked away with the Larry Bird Trophy as the Eastern Conference finals MVP, per ESPN.
Unsung hero Caleb Martin produced another excellent performance. He finished with 26 points and 10 rebounds in 45 minutes on 11-for-16 from the field in Game 7.
What Butler said last year
After painfully losing in Game 7 last year, Butler was adamant they would return to the same stage this season.
“Next year, we will have enough, and we’re gonna be right back in this same situation and we’re gonna get it done,” he said, via USA Today.
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Miami are the second 8th seed to make the NBA Finals since the 1999 New York Knicks. Butler reflected on those comments after receiving his MVP award.
"I just know why Coach Pat [Riley] and Coach [Erik Spoelstra] wanted me to be here," Butler said, via ESPN. "And that's to compete at a high level and to win championships..."
He added the team was consistently capable of giving him the opportunity to do so.
I know the work that we all put into it, so I know what we're capable of. Nobody is satisfied. We haven't done anything. We don't play just to win the Eastern Conference; we play to win the whole thing."
With his perfect prediction now a reality, the Heat will lock horns with the Denver Nuggets juggernaut in the 2023 NBA Finals for the chance to win their first Larry O’Brien trophy since 2013.
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How Martin became a key player
Sports Brief earlier analyzed how Martin went from being an undrafted player to an important star for the Heat.
With Tyler Herro injured, Martin proved himself to the Heat and is set to play a key role in the 2023 NBA Finals.
Will he rise to the occasion in the NBA Finals against the Nuggets and complete a remarkable tale of success?