Jimmy Butler’s will to win is obvious in the fourth quarter.
The 76ers swingman is hard to stop in the last 12 minutes of games. His mind-set is “just win.”
“My team needs me to makes shots – not just take them – and to guard,” Butler said. “Then when the fourth quarter comes, the guys who are the best players in the league, that’s when they turn it up a notch.”
In his estimation, the Sixers have quite a few of those guys on the team. He said he’s excited to go out and compete with them in the fourth quarter.
Butler’s teammates have to be equally excited that he was acquired in a trade from the Minnesota Timberwolves on Nov. 12. He finally gives the squad someone who can close out a game.
Heading into Monday’s game against the Pistons, Butler was tied with Los Angeles Lakers forward LeBron James as the league’s top fourth-quarter scoring leader at 8.5 points. The four-time All-Star has been able to do that without forcing things.
“I try to play basketball the right way,” he said. “I think my teammates, my coaches know where I like the ball on the floor. You probably can tell where I like the ball on the floor as well.
“So as long as I pick and choose my spots wisely, I feel like I can get off a good shot.”
The eighth-year veteran had game-winning three-pointers during a five-game stretch with the Sixers. Both of his baskets were step-back jumpers from 27 feet out by the opposing team’s bench. His first one came with 0.3 left in a 122-119 overtime victory over the Charlotte Hornets at the Spectrum Center on Nov. 17.
Then on Nov. 25, his three-pointer with 0.4 seconds gave the Sixers a 127-125 victory over the Brooklyn Nets at the Barclays Center.