This is as bad as a slump can get for a professional basketball player. Sometimes you can’t hit shots you normally make. You struggle to find your rhythm on both ends of the floor. The confidence is at a very low rate. Chicago Bulls‘ Jimmy Butler is going through all of the above and is not happy about it.
Butler has fought through some major issues this season. He was dealing with a sore toe earlier in the year that put him on the shelf for 12 games. Then he lost his starting backcourt mate, Derrick Rose, for the season with another knee injury. They were unable to gain any continuity or connection with each other. Butler was very excited about the possibility of playing with Rose, but it never happened.
Butler has is still dealing with fatigue and more nagging injuries keep creeping up. The minor injuries has shook his confidence. Over the last eight games, Butler is only shooting 31 percent from the field and averaging 11 points. His jump shot, which was a lethal weapon last season, has gotten away from him. He is not finishing at the rim and has looked a step slow on his most valuable asset, his defense. That’s the most alarming part about Butler’s struggles. He is still a top perimeter defender, but opponents are attacking him more than ever. He has to step up that part of his game because his sidekick, Luol Deng, is no longer there since being traded.
Coach Tom Thibodeau is very confident Butler will figure it out and get his game back on track. He has no worries because he helps in other ways instead of just scoring. He runs the floor, handles the ball and still plays all-world defense. But for the Bulls to continue to fight in the Eastern Conference, they need the emergence of Jimmy “Buckets” to arrive once again.