What was considered an almost guaranteed reunion turned completely around on Friday morning when Caron Butler decided to sign with the Oklahoma City Thunder instead of the first team that drafted him, the Miami Heat. Although the Thunder have been in the discussion all along, Miami was considered the heavy favorites to land Butler after he was bought out by the Milwaukee Bucks on Wednesday morning. Not only did Butler play his first two seasons in the NBA for Miami, but he is also a very close friend of Dwyane Wade‘s, plus has several other connections in the South Florida area. It all seemed to be a perfect fit on paper, but the most important factor for Butler in all of this was which team was going to give him the best opportunity to still shine in the league, and that team was the Oklahoma City Thunder.
With Miami, Butler would have received spotty minutes from Erik Spoelstra, most likely playing as the ninth or 10th man in the rotation. With the Thunder however, Butler will be backing up Kevin Durant, which will undoubtedly equate to more minutes in the rotation. Miami also has a plethora of three-point shooters, whereas the Thunder aren’t nearly as fortunate. Butler is shooting near 40 percent from beyond the arc, so his addition will be a definite boost for the second unit.
In the end, Butler had his choice between the two best teams in the league, and he chose the one that would give him more of an opportunity to play. Butler wasn’t losing in this scenario, but his choice in the Thunder could have him missing out on a potential championship at the end of the playoffs (Miami Heat bias coming into play here). Either way, it will be interesting to see how Butler fits in with Durant, Russell Westbrook and the rest of the Thunder’s roster. The “Servant” and the “Butler”, together at last.
Jared Doyle is a Miami Heat writer for RantSports.com.
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