An ideal fit for the swarming system of Chicago Bulls coach Tom Thibodeau, Jimmy Butler has become one of the NBA's elite perimeter defenders. With Marco Belinelli's departure in free agency, Thibodeau has indicated that Butler will step into the starting shooting guard role.
ThePostGame: You earned a reputation as a defensive stopper last year. How did you come to embrace that role, and when did you embrace that role?
JIMMY BUTLER: That's what gets me on the court -- that's what keeps me on the court. We've got a lot of guys in our league that can score a lot of points. If you can slow them down, you give your team a chance to win.
TPG: What's it like playing for Tom Thibodeau in Chicago?
BUTLER: It's crazy. But you love it because he's a winner. I feel like everybody in our league is about winning -- why not play for that guy?
TPG: What was it like playing with Nate Robinson [who recently signed a two-year deal with the Denver Nuggets]? What is he like out there and in the locker room?
BUTLER: Crazy. You love Nate because he’s the high-energy guy no matter what. He’s going to joke around when it's not game-time, but when it's game-time, he’s bringing it to the fullest.
TPG: Looking forward to Derrick Rose's return next year?
BUTLER: You know it. That’s a question you don’t even have to ask me.
TPG: What has your most memorable moment as an athlete or fan been?
BUTLER: For me, man, it's getting drafted because that's when you know not that you've made it, but that you’ve made your dream come true. That’s when I knew I was an NBA player, when I heard David Stern call my name.