Jimmy Butler Selected for 2nd All-Star Game


Brett Starkopf, Writer, Copy Editor

Jimmy Butler, the NBA’s reigning Most Improved Player, was selected to his second consecutive All-Star Game on Jan. 28, prior to the Bulls game against the Los Angeles Lakers.

Butler showed why he was deserving of the selection, finishing the 114-91 win with 26 points, 10 assists, five rebounds and four steals.

For the season, Butler is averaging 22.4 points per game, 4.3 assists per game, and 5.3 rebounds per game as of Jan. 29.

The five-year veteran has quickly become the go-to guy for the Bulls. While former MVP Derrick Rose battled injuries over the past three seasons, Butler filled the void as the Bulls’ No. 1 option on offense. Since coming into the league, his PPG has risen every year, scoring seven more points a game in 2014-2015 than he did in 2013-2014.

Butler thrived under former head coach Tom Thibodeau, who emphasized defense. Since getting regular playing time, Butler would defend the opposition’s best player, causing them fits, and solidifying his place as an elite defender.

The combination of his defense and his vastly improved offense has transformed Butler into an elite shooting guard in the game. So much so, he is among the 30 finalists for the 2016 Team USA Basketball team, heading to Rio.

The All-Star Game is Feb. 14 at the Air Canada Center in Toronto.