From a journalistic standpoint, the public has no reason to believe that ESPN reporter Rachel Nichols and NBA player Jimmy Butler are guilty of the charge of “slapping cheeks” in July 2020, a strict violation of NBA Bubble protocol and a desecration of 20 years of marriage.
But NBA Twitter sleuths never let truth get in the way of a good story, and in the wake of the recent Nichols’ circus, found it imperative to stoke the coals of the Jimmy Butler Bubble Love Affair narrative.
NBA Insider Chris Haynes reported in July 2020 that a security guard received a complaint of a “large thumping” within a bubble hotel room during the quarantine period. The guard knocked on Butler’s door and he answered, drenched in sweat, claiming he was dribbling a basketball.
As the world crumbles around Nichols following her now infamous “diversity” comment, urban gossip site Jordan Thrilla unleashed the rumor that those thumping sounds from a year ago were in fact the sounds of intense, rhythmic coitaling between two consenting adults.
The Internet then pointed to a cutesy bubble interview Rachel and Jimmy engaged in during Miami’s Finals push last summer, that would be nothing to think twice about if the framework hadn’t already been constructed.
Jimmy Butler 100% clapped the Rachel Nichols wagon. A freak of nature pic.twitter.com/8jSZkAy4q5
— Truth Turtle (@wecomingoneday) July 6, 2021
Conspiracy theorists were pleased to also enter into testimony a clip of Karl Anthony-Townes shouting at his former teammate to “Call Rachel Nichols” following a double technical.
Rachel Nichols leaked this story about banging Jimmy Butler to prove she's not racist pic.twitter.com/1wlCOYJx6V
— Cris Castillo (@CrisShittingham) July 6, 2021
Meme’d Until Proven Innocent
how the security guard was after disrupting jimmy butler clapping rachel nichols: pic.twitter.com/ZWsL1eTunh
— Trey 🔥 Braves Szn (@TreyyisClutch) July 6, 2021
Bam watching Rachel Nichols leaving Jimmy Butler’s room after her 3rd Big Face Coffee 😭 pic.twitter.com/4Yehgyg0JY
— One9Sports (@One9Sports) July 6, 2021
Jimmy Butler getting ready before he sees Rachel Nichols pic.twitter.com/SCp70FcgTY
— Nash (@SunsPlayoffSZN) July 6, 2021
Rachel Nichols husband waking up to see why Jimmy Butler is trending pic.twitter.com/5mkE33BzJA
— DaFriezaFan (@C0ASTALFAN) July 6, 2021
The security guard when he seen Rachel Nichols in Jimmy Butler's hotel room pic.twitter.com/Xu72zgAkEt
— Jamius (@freelanceburner) July 6, 2021
jimmy butler bc he smashed
trending: rachel nichols: pic.twitter.com/u7yJCSTCJY
— madi ²² (@madimiami) July 6, 2021
NBA Twitter belongs in a straight jacket.