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Miami Heat's Jimmy Butler Gets The Best Of T.J. Warren In 114-92 Victory Against Indiana Pacers

Heat forward Jimmy Butler dominates anticipated matchup versus T.J. Warren of the Indiana Pacers

The main event was the matchup between Miami Heat forward Jimmy Butler and T.J. Warren of the Indiana Pacers.

The Heat would rather just look at Monday's 114-92 victory against the Pacers as another step toward fine-tuning things before the postseason begin.

Butler won the personal battle by finishing with 19 points, 11 rebounds, five assists and four steals while Warren had just 12 points. Their meeting was highly anticipated because it was the first time they played against each other since they got into some heated trash talk during their last game in January.

"Anything right now with the NBA is good," Heat coach Erik Spoelstra said. "We need this. We need competition. So much of that was a storyline but who cares? That was months ago. We're out here completing a season and just about on the brink of the playoffs in a global pandemic. It's just all good right now, the fact that we're able to do this. If it contributes to interest because people want that storyline, so be it."

Warren had averaged 35 points in the Pacers' five previous games in Orlando. The matchup was obviously personal for Butler.

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"It's not the first time," guard Goran Dragic said of Butler's impact. "He's doing that every game. Each game, he's our leader and you can see how he can manipulate the game ... It makes our jobs easier."

Butler had missed the last three games with an ankle injury. The Heat also welcomed back Dragic, who was sidelined two games with a sore ankle. He finished with 11 points and nine assists.

"He and Goran are veteran savvy players," Spoelstra said. "That's probably what was missing the most. Both of our last two games were winnable games ... It certainly helps during those swings moments, momentum moments of a game where those guys just know how to get into the offense, get the ball where it needs to go."

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