Herro To Miss Game 6; Smart, R. Williams Active

6:36pm: Smart and Williams will both be active for Boston, reports Tim Bontemps of ESPN (via Twitter).

6:06pm: Heat guard Tyler Herro is expected to be sidelined for Friday’s Game 6 against Boston, league sources told Chris Haynes of Yahoo Sports.

Herro suffered a left groin strain in Game 3 and will now miss Games 4, 5 and 6 of the Eastern Conference Finals with the injury. He was a limited participant in the team’s shootaround this morning, but “experienced discomfort while sliding defensively,” Haynes reports.

Head coach Erik Spoelstra confirmed that Herro will be out, tweets Jared Weiss of The Athletic.

He’s definitely made progress, but he’s not quite ready to step into this kind of intensity of a game,” Spoelstra said.

It makes sense to be cautious with a muscle strain, as they can be notoriously tricky to deal with and easily re-injured, like what happened with teammate Kyle Lowry‘s hamstring strain in the previous series. Lowry hasn’t looked like himself since he originally sustained the injury more than a month ago.

After averaging 20.7 points, 5.0 rebounds and 4.0 assists on .447/.399/.868 shooting in 66 regular season games (32.6 minutes), Herro saw his numbers drop off in the postseason, averaging 13.5 points, 4.1 rebounds and 2.9 assists on .413/.232/.926 shooting in 14 games. Still, his absence will certainly be felt by the Heat, as they’ve struggled mightily to score without the Sixth Man of the Year winner, posting just 82 points in Game 4 and 80 in Game 5, both losses.

On Boston’s side, Celtics head coach Ime Udoka told reporters, including Chris Mannix of Sports Illustrated (Twitter link), that both Marcus Smart and Robert Williams are game-time decisions for the potential close-out contest. Boston currently leads Miami 3-2.

Smart and Williams had previously been listed as questionable, and it seems we won’t know their status until later this evening. Game 6 tips off at 7:30pm CT on ESPN.

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