Eastern Notes: Marshall, Butler, Bosh

Jimmy Butler notes that he and Bulls coach Fred Hoiberg are learning a lot about each other, and that Hoiberg is holding him accountable for his actions, Nick Friedell of ESPNChicago.com writes. “I still got respect for him,” Butler said of Hoiberg. “I don’t think it’s a different light. Nothing I do is to disrespect anybody. I think he realizes I’m going to be here, I realize he’s going to be here, so we got to deal with each other anyways. I think that he’s holding me accountable for everything. He talked to me whenever I was low energy last game, and I fixed it. That’s the type of guy he is. He has the utmost confidence in me because he continually put the ball in my hand when he didn’t have to.

Butler does appreciate the effort that Hoiberg has made to connect with him, Friedell adds. “I think we’re both learning a lot about each other,” Butler said. “He’s probably learning how moody I am on a daily basis, to tell you the truth. And it’s hard, but I think he lets me be who I am. He handles everything that I do very well. I’m not a big communicator, I’m not great at it, but he’s always talking to me. He’s always asking, ‘How are you doing? What can we do?’ He’s always asking my opinion on a lot of things. Yeah, it helped a lot.

Here’s the latest from the Eastern Conference:

  • Sixers point guard Kendall Marshall‘s role has been significantly diminished with the team’s acquisition of Ish Smith from New Orleans, but he is trying to remain upbeat despite the team’s woes, Keith Pompey of The Philadelphia Inquirer writes.”It’s not easy,” Marshall said of losing his starting spot. “But it’s part of being a professional. I’ve definitely been in this situation before. I know what it’s like. At the end of day, I have to play better if I want to be on the court. He’s playing extremely well. Obviously our team is playing a lot better. We are in game. When the team is playing better that’s not anything I can be mad about.
  • Chris Bosh believes that the Heat suffer from focus issues and don’t pay enough attention when leads begin to slip away during games, Jason Lieser of The Palm Beach Post writes. The power forward didn’t call out anyone in particular, but did note that the problem includes both players and coaches, Lieser adds. “Yeah, top to bottom,” Bosh said. “I’m inclusive. We’re a team. From me to [coach Erik Spoelstra] to the guys in the locker room, we have to not let that affect our play. We have to move on to the next one. We want to have the No. 1 league defense and the No. 1 league offense, but we don’t have that, so we have to work with what we have and play the game.
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