Storyline: Wade-Butler Dynamic

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Jimmy Butler: Everybody knows the type of career that D-Wade has had. Obviously he’s gonna be a Hall of Famer, but the person he is off the floor, the things that he’s passionate about, the brand that he’s built, that’s something that I think every player can model after, and the fact that he’s doing everything the right way, he’s probably the nicest guy in the league by far, everybody loves him, that’s a legacy that you wanna leave. On the court, off the floor, he’s the man.

“He’s playing as good as anybody in the league right now,” Wade told ESPN.com on Saturday after the Bulls’ 123-118 win over the Toronto Raptors. “What he’s doing in the fourth quarter is even more impressive than the stat line at the end of the day. That stat line is amazing, but everybody knows we’re going to Jimmy. And to still be able to make those plays, make those things, it’s incredible. And then to still guard one or two of the other best players on the other end of the floor in the fourth, that’s impressive, man. He’s playing out of this world right now. His confidence is out the roof, and that goes a long way.”

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“Everybody was psyched up to get Chris Paul back,” Mike D’Antoni said. “Obviously, he’s going to make a big difference. Just one of those nights we played well offensively and got up big. It’s like playing golf for the first time in a long time. You go out and shoot a good score and the next three days you’re slicing all over the place. “Chris was excited and everybody was excited. It went well and Chris played really well. You can see the difference he’s going to make, especially when James Harden rests. Guys will be getting a lot of open shots and we have guys who can shoot.”
The Rockets cited their defensive lulls and pointed out that they will face a greater challenge in Memphis on Saturday. But they had brought Chris Paul back without a hitch, showing signs of what they can be if they can put all of their wealth of talent together. “He looks really good on the court,” Harden said. “Obviously, he looks comfortable. The more he gets his wind back and gets more minutes, he’ll get even better. “I think that’s how we’ve been all year, that happiness of wanting to compete for each other. Obviously, he brings that extra excitement. Once he gets back full healthy and Luc (Mbah a Moute, who was out with an illness) comes back and we have that full roster, we’ll ride it out and see how good we can be.”
Storyline: Harden-Paul Dynamic