Miami Heat forward Jimmy Butler was embroiled in a verbal altercation and had to be restrained from teammate Udonis Haslem and coach Erik Spoelstra. The incident occurred during a timeout midway through the third quarter of Wednesday’s game against the Golden State Warriors. 

All three had to be held back during a heated verbal exchange that saw finger-pointing and a thrown clipboard. The Warriors defeated the Heat 118-104. Spoelstra said the skirmish won’t affect the team’s long-term goals. 

“You can use moments during the season to catapult you,” he said after the game. “You can galvanize together over frustration and disappointment.”

Miami’s Kyle Lowry said what transpired “happens” in this sport.  

“Honestly, it’s not a moment of anything,” he said. “For us, it’s guys who really want to win basketball games. We have great leadership. It won’t affect us. At all.”

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The incident occurred shortly after the Warriors went on a run to start the second half going on a 19-0 run. They went on to outscore the Heat 37-24 in the fourth quarter to beat the Eastern Conference leaders. The Warriors won with a shorthanded team due to Klay Thompson and Draymond Green both sitting out the game due to injury management. Stephen Curry was already out with a left foot sprain. 

Without three of its stars, the Warriors got 30 points from Jordan Poole and 22 points each from All-Star Andrew Wiggins and rookie Jonathan Kuminga. It was intriguing and also exciting to see the Warriors’ young stars perform at such a high level against difficult opponents. 

Kyle Lowry led the Miami Heat with 26 points and nine assists. Bam Adebayo had 25 points and Jimmy Butler added 20 points.