Kyle Lowry gives love to Jimmy Butler, Heat ahead of return to Miami

MIAMI — Before making his return to his native Philadelphia to play for the 76ers, Kyle Lowry was a key member of the Miami Heat for 2.5 seasons.

After nine seasons as a member of the Toronto Raptors, Lowry signed with the Heat in the 2021 offseason. His numbers in Miami were not up to par with his All-Star level of play while with the Raptors, but he had some good moments in helping the Heat reach the Eastern Conference finals in 2022 and the finals in 2023.

As he makes his return to Miami on Thursday as a member of the Sixers, Lowry gave a lot of love to the Heat organization ad what they were able to accomplish together.

“I think this organization’s meant a lot to me,” Lowry told Sixers Wire of the Heat. “I have admiration for these coaches, the players, the ownership group, Pat (Riley), Andy Elisburg, like I have admiration and love for those guys. Those guys gave me an opportunity to go to East Conference finals, go to a finals, get a house here, have my family settled. Like I said, I cheer for them except for when I’m playing against them.”

Heat, and former Sixer, star Jimmy Butler and Lowry have a good relationship. The two of them have kept a strong friendship beyond the basketball court and he is looking forward to seeing Butler and his former Heat teammates on Thursday.

“One of my closest friends in the world is Jimmy Butler, and I love him and I will love him past basketball, beyond basketball,” Lowry added. “Kevin Love, I’ve created relationships that are lifelong relationships in a place that I love.”

Lowry and the Heat reached the finals as the No. 8 seed in 2023 and with the Sixers in a similar position, one has to wonder if there are any similarities between what Miami did and what this current Sixers team can possibly do.

However, Lowry shut that notion down. The Sixers are in a different situation compared to what the Heat had to go through.

“No,” he said succinctly. “Completely different situation. A completely different year. I can’t look at what I helped the team do last year. I got to look at what we have right now and what we’re doing now.”

Either way, Lowry will look to lead the Sixers against his former Heat team on Thursday and lead Philadelphia to a win.

Story originally appeared on Sixers Wire