When the Chicago Bulls visited the Los Angeles Lakers on Sunday night, Jimmy Butler dropped his best performance of the season scoring 40 points leading his team to an 118-110. It an eye-popping performance that Butler took command throughout. Following the game, Bulls head coach Fred Hoiberg revealed something shocking that his start guard told him before tip-off.
“He told me before the game, ‘Coach, I’m going for 40 tonight,’ ” Hoiberg said. “And he did it.”
It may be something that many players may say before a game, but Butler came through on his word. With Dwyane Wade out of the lineup due to rest, he took advantage of the situation nailing 14-of-23 field goal attempts, including going 12 of 14 from the charity stripe. Butler is off to his best offensive start of his NBA career registering games with at least 20 points, which is the most that he’s had to begin a season to this point (previously nine in 2014-15 season).
What’s more impressive is that he is one of five NBA players with at least 15 three-pointers and 90 free throws made so far this season. His increased aggressiveness on the offense has led to him averaging a career-high 25.1 points per game. If Butler can continue his uptick in production, there’s no reason to believe he can’t work his way into another All-Star selection and the NBA MVP conversation.