Heat’s Jimmy Butler to miss time after death in family

Miami Heat standout guard/forward Jimmy Butler has been granted a leave of absence following the death of a family member, agent Bernie Lee said on Sunday.Jimmy Butler

Jimmy Butler has been granted a leave of absence as he deals with the death of a family member,” Lee said. “Jimmy and his family ask for privacy at this point in time as they navigate this loss. Updates will be given when appropriate.”

It’s not been determined when Butler will rejoin the defending Eastern Conference champions or how many games he will miss during his absence. 

Butler, 34, is averaging 21.4 points, 5.5 rebounds and 4.6 assists. The Heat, however, have struggled since the trade for guard Terry Rozier (via the Charlotte Hornets), sitting at 4-5 since the deal.

Miami (28-24) entered Sunday’s game vs. the Boston Celtics in eighth place in the East — the same spot it was last year entering the playoffs. The Heat then advanced to the Finals before losing to the Denver Nuggets.

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