"If he wants a one-on-one battle, I’m all for it."
Jimmy Butler vs Lance Stephenson is the beef nobody saw coming, but here we are.
The whole Butler-Stephenson dispute started when Butler made an appearance on the “Winging It” podcast with Vince Carter and Annie Finberg earlier this week. During their discussion, the Miami Heat All-Star explained how he knew he could be an NBA player once Lance made the league.
"I was watching guys play, and I was like, ‘I know I’m not that good of a basketball player, but I know I can make it if this guy can make it,’ ” Butler reminisced. “I always saw Lance Stephenson. I saw him, and I was like, ‘Nah man, if he in the league then I can be in the league. He is a talented-a– player, don’t get me wrong, but if he can do it, I can do it.”
Not long after Butler's comments started making the rounds on social media, Stephenson, who is currently playing overseas in China, issued the following statement on twitter: "That boy look up to me don’t downgrade talent I motivate you to work hard and get in that gym. You love my game don’t be scared to say it."
According to Ira Winderman of the South Florida Sun Sentinel, Butler was asked about Stephenson's tweet on Tuesday night, and he said he's all for a one-on-one battle if that's what Lance wants.
“I’m not worried about him,” Butler said prior to Miami's loss in Denver. “They asked me a question, I answered the question. Take it for how you want to take it. If he wants a one-on-one battle, I’m all for it. I don’t think at this point, this is just me being honest, right now, me in my career, he in his, he’s not better than me. So, I’m willing to play one-on-one if that’s what, I don’t know, he wants to see, the world wants to see, whatever.
“I’m not intimidated by his tweet. I don’t think it was so much personal, that’s just how I thought back then. I don’t think the same way now, only because I know that I’m a better player.”
We're sure Lance will jump at the opportunity to play Jimmy Buckets one-on-one, but as of this writing he has not yet responded to the challenge.