Bulls Jimmy Butler Scores 52 In Win Against Hornets

By Mark Dan, Posted: 01/04/17 02:30AM EST

Jimmy Butler aka "Jimmy Buckets" became the eighth player this season to reach the 50-point plateau. The Chicago Bulls all-star single-handedly carried his team to a 118-111 victory over the Charlotte Hornets on Monday night.

Playing without Dwyane Wade, who was out with left knee soreness, and benched point guard Rajon Rondo, Butler posted another career highlight with a superb performance against an up and coming Charlotte Hornets team. The struggling Bulls badly needed the win in their quest for a playoff spot in the tight Eastern Conference. The Hornets dominated the first three quarters, until Jimmy Butler took over and rallied the Bulls by himself.

In the final 6:21 of the fourth quarter, Butler single-handedly outscored Charlotte 17-11, that included a crucial basket, plus clutch free throws in the final minute of the game. He added 12 rebounds to go with his 52 points, six assists, and three steals in 38 minutes in an all-around effort. He made 15 of his 24 field goal attempts and tied his own career-high by converting 21 of his 22 free throws, according to Yahoo Sports.

Jimmy Buckets became the only player since his Airness Michael Jordan, to score multiple 50-point games in a Bulls uniform. This was the second time Butler reached the scoring milestone, as he dropped his career-high 53 points against the Philadelphia 76ers last January 14, 2016, and was two points away from passing this mark against the Hornets. Michael Jordan is the all-time leader in 50-point games for the Bulls with 30, via ESPN.

Butler showcased sensational plays down the stretch and scored 17 huge points in the fourth quarter that drew the crowd to their feet, chanting "MVP!". Bulls head coach Fred Hoiberg commended his all-star guard for being aggressive and making big plays in the crucial final minutes. Jimmy Butler responded by saying that he would do whatever it takes to help his team win and push the Bulls to a playoff berth, in a report by nba.com.

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