Atlantic Notes: Butler-Brown, Theis, Knicks, Celtics

Current Heat All-Star Jimmy Butler, formerly a clutch swingman on the star-studded, title-contending 2018/19 Sixers, acknowledged that his relationship with coach Brett Brown was not particularly great, as he told his former Philadelphia teammate J.J. Redick on The J.J. Redick Podcast With Tommy Alter.

On the podcast, Butler described an uncomfortably tense and silent film-watching session with Redick, Butler, and Sixers All-Stars Joel Embiid and Ben Simmons. “And I told you this as we walked out, ‘J.J., why would we ever go in there again?,'” Butler said on the podcast. “‘Nothing’s getting accomplished. Nobody’s saying nothing to anybody.'”

Butler also discussed having spoken up about the offense in a subsequent film-watching session in Portland that became a hot topic in the national media. Butler suggested the conversation was blown out of proportion by outside observers, a point his former Sixers teammate agreed with. “I don’t know why it got reported the way it did,” Redick said.

There’s more out of the Atlantic Division:

  • Daniel Theis, the Celtics‘ starting center replacement for the departed Al Horford, was having a comparable season to his predecessor before play was suspended due to the coronavirus outbreak, according to The Stats Corner of NBC Sports Boston. Theis’ production per 36 minutes has actually been better than Horford’s during 2018/19. Their scoring numbers are similar, while Theis is pulling down more rebounds and blocks and shooting at a higher field goal percentage. The 27-year-old German signed a two-year, $10MM contract with Boston during the summer of 2019. The 33-year-old Horford, meanwhile, inked a four-year, $97MM contract ($109MM if he hits all incentives) with the Sixers this summer.
  • As the Knicks continue to overhaul their front office, Cavaliers salary cap expert Brock Aller has emerged as a potential addition to new team president Leon Rose‘s staff, according to Stefan Bondy of the New York Daily News. After spending a decade as the personal assistant to team owner Dan Gilbert, Aller graduated to a position as senior director of basketball operations in 2017.
  • The Celtics team, staff, and attendant beat reporters experienced a tense journey on the road as the coronavirus spread beyond tenable levels, according to Adam Himmelsbach of the Boston Globe in his first-person account of what transpired.
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11 thoughts on “Atlantic Notes: Butler-Brown, Theis, Knicks, Celtics

  1. stevep-4

    Did someone tape Butler’s mouth shut during the film session? Veterans are allowed to speak during prep sessions, I think…

    I love Jimmy, but this is one of those instances where he is showing why people find him annoying. If he felt the coach wasn’t preparing them, it’s his job as a veteran leader to bring it up at the time, and offer his comments, not trash the coach long after.

    • Simmons>Russ

      If you watched the podcast he said he didn’t speak out because he only just got traded to the team 7 days earlier and it was all over the media about how much of a bad locker room player he is after his stints in Chicago and Minny. So decided he didn’t want to look like a pain in the a** so watched the session and was stunned by the silence from everyone and then said those things to JJ after the session.

      He also goes on to say in the podcast that like 2 weeks later on their road trip out west he had spoken to certain players about certain things they felt needed to change but no one wanted to speak up during the silent film sessions so eventually he did stand up and say something and that’s when it went viral about him questioning Brett Browns offence. I remember Richard Jefferson and everyone on TV questioning Jimmy and again calling him a bad locker room guy.

      Ever since then he didn’t get on with Brett, didn’t like his sessions and decided he wanted to leave…

  2. ZacharyH

    I think it’s hilarious Brett Brown didn’t speak in the film sessions. No one did. So dysfunctional.

  3. x%sure

    If nobody was talking, that would make it look like an outburst when Butler finally did later on, using the language he uses. To get that description, would not require that there be shouting.

    I think the point is more about how even last year, Embiid & Simmons were not speaking and Brown had given up on changing that.

  4. Curtisrowe

    Theiss signed for two years-10 million. Not two years- 20 million as you this article reported.

  5. phillyballers

    Jimmy talks about the Sixers so much, it’s like you’re on a date with your new chick but you only talk about hour ex. Makes you think he misses his ex.

  6. Simmons>Russ

    I watched the podcast and Jimmy did everything correctly even JJ agrees he did.
    He was painted to look like a bad guy before he joined and when he joined things were very dysfunctional. He tried to fit in with the silence in the session but obviously that didn’t work out and he spoke up on the behalf of other players and then it went to the media that he questioned Browns offence.

    Personally I’m a huge Sixers fan but I’m also a huge Burke fan and wish he had stayed and that the coach left. I’m glad now for Jimmy he’s in a situation that suits him and is doing well, which I can’t say the same for with the Sixers unfortunately who can’t win games on the road.

    For a basketball no biased perspective I agree with Jimmy what is the point in a film session if you don’t discuss and talk about the film you watch. You should be analysing it and dissecting it down. What went wrong? What should I do next time? What could we do to prevent getting into this? How can we do this better?
    It literally explains so much on why the Sixers haven’t improved from last year to this year.
    Joel and Ben both haven’t gotten any better if anything they have both got worse and it must be hard to have the pressure from everyone to win and be successful if your not getting taught how to do so.

  7. stevep-4

    Hm sounds like none of the players in Philly has true leadership qualities…I can see how Jimmy didn’t want to look like the bad guy, but there are ways to encourage team mates to speak up / engage.

    Even asking, “do you guys ask questions during film sessions, or do we do that later?” would have created some engagement, without seeming pushy.

    It does sound weird, but that is 50% on the players, communication is a 2-way street.

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