11:54am: In the wake of Bosh’s latest setback, the Heat “increasingly believe” that his career with the team is over, says Adrian Wojnarowski of The Vertical (via Twitter). Wojnarowski adds that Bosh hasn’t wanted to speak to team president Pat Riley “for months.”
11:08am: Chris Bosh has failed his physical exam with the Heat and has not been cleared by the team to participate in training camp, reports Tim Reynolds of The Associated Press (via Twitter). The Heat confirmed the news in a press release. According to Barry Jackson of The Miami Herald, a “complication” arose during the team’s medical tests on Bosh, derailing his attempted comeback for the time being.
As Jackson details, the Heat’s exams discovered “evidence of some continued clotting,” which is thought to be related to one of the previous blood clot episodes that sidelined Bosh for parts of the last two seasons. The clotting complication isn’t viewed as life-threatening, but it will require medication, and the club doesn’t consider it realistic for Bosh to get back on the court and play in his current condition.
Bosh has long been optimistic that he’ll get back in uniform for the Heat this season, and the team had become increasingly hopeful that he would be cleared for camp — there was a growing belief that the veteran big man could potentially play during the regular season, despite taking blood-thinning medication. However, Bosh’s return was always contingent on him passing several medical tests before training camp, and being cleared by Heat doctors. That hasn’t happened.
According to Jackson, it’s not yet clear whether Bosh will continue pushing to return. In the short term, amidst this week’s setback, he’s not expected to file a grievance with the players’ union.
While we wait to see what the next step is for Bosh and the Heat, a February 9 deadline looms for salary-cap reasons. If Bosh has been unable to play for Miami by that date, and a doctor jointly approved by the NBA and the Players’ Association rules him medically unable to return, the Heat could remove his current and future cap hits from their books, creating significant cap space. However, if the team made that move and Bosh was eventually cleared to return, he wouldn’t be able to rejoin the Heat.