When the Philadelphia 76ers traded for Jimmy Butler last season, he was brought in with the hope that he'd take the young Sixers team to the promised land. Unfortunately, that never came to fruition, and the Sixers exited the playoffs in devastating fashion at the hands of Kawhi Leonard and his Toronto Raptors in the second round.
Now, Butler is in Miami with a brand new four-year $142 million max deal. But to the surprise of many, it's being reported that Butler left a five-year max deal on the table with the Sixers in favor of his deal with the Heat.
There are a few things that are a bit odd about Jimmy's decision here, if these reports are true. First, he's said multiple times that his top priority is winning. There isn't an NBA pundit out there who would argue that Miami is in a better position to win than Philly is right now.
Furthermore, why would Butler decline a better deal with a better team for less money with the Heat, who failed to reach the playoffs in 2018-19? It doesn't quite add up. But, for anyone who's followed Butler throughout his career, he's always wanted to be "the man" for his team.
It's hard to argue that he'd be that guy in Philly with the front office clearly trying to build around their two young stars in Joel Embiid and Ben Simmons.
None of us truly know what Butler's thought process was, especially with reports from ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski stating that the Sixers weren't interested in giving Butler any kind of max deal, whether it be across four or five seasons.
So it's not entirely clear what lured Butler to the Heat, but if the latest reports are true, it wasn't about the money. Butler got paid by Miami, and he seems happy about the next chapter of his career, even if it means he'll have to work a lot harder to earn his first ring.