Heat stars Jimmy Butler and Bam Adebayo have been ruled out for Monday’s contest against the Timberwolves, according to Ira Winderman of The South Florida Sun Sentinel.
Butler, who recently expressed his frustration with his inability to stay on the court due to a variety of injuries, suffered a right ankle sprain in Friday’s loss to Indiana. The veteran forward was previously listed as questionable, but was ruled out after testing the ankle during Miami’s shootaround on Monday morning, tweets Anthony Chiang of The Miami Herald.
Adebayo is dealing with a non-COVID illness. Unlike Butler, he has been mostly healthy this season — this will be his fourth missed game, with the Heat going 1-2 in his three absences thus far, per Winderman.
Unfortunately, Adebayo’s primary backup at center, Dewayne Dedmon, was also ruled out Monday due to “ongoing plantar fasciitis in his left foot,” Winderman adds. The team will likely lean on a pair of rookies (first-rounder Nikola Jovic and two-way big man Orlando Robinson) to fill minutes in the middle.
The Heat have been dinged up seemingly all season long, and being without their two best players certainly won’t help matters tonight. They are currently 16-17, the No. 9 seed in the East.