Chris Bosh believes he should be medically cleared to play and may take the issue to the players union, writes Barry Jackson of The Miami Herald. Bosh, who has been sidelined with blood clot issues the past two seasons, had considered filing a grievance against the Heat during the playoffs, but eventually relented.
Miami officials are concerned that Bosh may be risking serious injury or worse by playing while on blood thinners. Doctors are debating whether he should stop taking the medication during the summer, but Bosh believes he can safely play while on a new drug that would be out of his system after 8 to 12 hours.
Miami-based doctor Robert Myerburg of UHealth told Jackson that he is skeptical of that plan, but said the two blood-clot incidents don’t mean Bosh will need the medication for the rest of his life.
“The debate in the medical community is because he’s on, should he be on permanent [blood thinners]? That’s a tough call,” Myerburg said. “The data just isn’t there to say he absolutely should or shouldn’t. It becomes a judgment issue. So if there is no predisposing factors other than trauma induced, that’s a judgment issue about whether to play.”
Myerburg suggested taking Bosh off blood thinners and using a smaller, temporary regimen if he experiences trauma after that. Bosh said last year that he doesn’t possess a gene that makes him predisposed to repeated clotting.
Heat president Pat Riley said at a recent press conference that the team is searching for ways to help Bosh get back on the court and will wait until August or September before making a decision on his status.
Some of Bosh’s representatives believe the Heat have financial reasons for not wanting Bosh to return. If he sits out the entire 2016/17 season, Miami can clear his salary for the following two seasons off its books, saving $25.2MM in 2017/18 and $26.8MM in 2018/19. The Heat insist that isn’t true, and say they will welcome Bosh back if he gets medical approval.
Teams are not permitted to remove a player from their cap until a year after his final game. Right now, that date would be Feb. 9, 2017, but if Bosh attempts a comeback next season, that time frame would be moved forward. If Bosh is taken off the cap, he would never be permitted to play for the Heat again.