12 December 2020 02:33
Miami Heat star Jimmy Butler isn't interested in getting hit with a tampering charge. Butler found himself in a dangerous situation after he liked an Instagram post about James Harden wanting to join the Heat, but Butler was able to talk his way out of it. Butler was asked about liking that post while appearing on ESPN's "The Jump." Butler initially responded by joking about liking Harden's hair before saying, "I just want the guy to be happy." That was deftly navigated by Butler. He not only managed to avoid saying anything that would get him in trouble, but he also complimented the Heat's current roster in his answer. That was probably a wise decision.
The Heat did pretty well without Harden last season, making it to the NBA Finals. Though the team fought hard, forcing a Game 6, the Heat eventually lost the series to the Los Angeles Lakers. Harden would undoubtedly make the Heat better, but the team is already in good shape without him. Jimmy Butler is trying to avoid a tampering fine Butler's hesitancy to talk about Harden comes as the NBA attempts to crack down on tampering. The league didn't do much when LeBron James openly lured Anthony Davis to the Lakers in 2018, but it has tried to make a bigger deal about tampering since then. In 2019, the Milwaukee Bucks were hit with a $50,000 fine after general manager Jon Horst said the team would give Giannis Antetokounmpo a max deal once Antetokounmpo was eligible. Keep in mind, Antetokounmpo is a member of the Bucks. That didn't matter in the NBA's eyes. Even though Horst was commenting about a player on his team, the league still penalized the Bucks. The league isn't above punishing players either. Golden State Warriors big man Draymond Green drew a $50,000 fine in August after saying Devin Booker needs to get out of Phoenix. Since Green is a member of another team, the NBA viewed his comments as tampering. Green seemed to realize he was in trouble right away. When TNT host Ernie Johnson asked Green if he was tampering, Green responded by saying "maybe." Story continues Butler didn't make that same mistake. More from Yahoo Sports: