The Heat and Pacers met on Wednesday night in a matchup of two teams jockeying for position in the Eastern Conference standings. Miami has been one of the surprises of the season, finding themselves in third in the East, while Indiana has been impressive holding onto sixth, one game back of fourth, despite not having Victor Oladipo all year.
The two teams are also similar in their styles of play, as neither are afraid of a little physicality and will mix it up as needed. Jimmy Butler and T.J. Warren found themselves going toe-to-toe a few times in the third quarter, with tempers flaring after Warren fouled Butler on a drive, eliciting technical fouls for both.
Shortly after that play, Butler picked up an offensive foul for ducking his shoulder into Warren, who followed Butler down the court clapping in his ear and earned a second T and an ejection. As Warren was being escorted off the floor by teammates, Butler blew him a few kisses, to which Warren took offense. As a result, he gave Butler the finger as he strolled towards the locker room.
T.J. Warren flipped Jimmy Butler off 😳 pic.twitter.com/DdyaoCKrvl
— Dime (@DimeUPROXX) January 9, 2020
Butler is one of the league’s finest heels, so it’s not a surprise to see him involved in such a situation. He all but goaded Warren into getting tossed with the aggressive offensive foul and then rolling the ball towards Warren, who couldn’t help himself but try to troll Butler back. He took it a touch too far for the refs, though, who tossed him to Butler’s delight.
Given that this is a potential playoff matchup in the East, this is one to bookmark for future meetings both in the regular season and, more importantly, come May.