Oladipo suffered the injury late in the fourth quarter of Miami’s blowout 121-99 Game 3 win over the East’s top-seeded Bucks yesterday. He collapsed to floor on a drive clutching the knee. Heat head coach Erik Spoelstra and other personnel helped him walk back to the team locker room.
This marks the second injury to a rotation wing for Miami in its ongoing series against Milwaukee, which the Heat are improbably leading 2-1. In Game 1, starting shooting guard Tyler Herro departed the game with what turned out to be two broken fingers in his right hand. He underwent surgery to repair the damaged digits and will miss at least the next six weeks of action. Oladipo only rejoined the team’s playoff rotation in the first place due to the absence of Herro.
Oladipo inked a two-year, $18.2MM deal with Miami last summer, which includes a $9.45MM player option for 2023/24. As we mentioned last week, picking up that option will limit the Heat’s flexibility this offseason, as it would put the team’s cumulative salaries well north of the luxury tax line. Given the 30-year-old’s lengthy injury history and middling production this year, he seems unlikely to earn anything close to his player option on the open market.
Oladipo ruptured the quadriceps tendon in his right knee during the 2018/19 season while still with the Pacers, then underwent a second operation on the quad late in the 2020/21 season while with the Heat.
Across his 42 healthy games during the 2022/23 regular season, the former two-time All-Star averaged 10.7 PPG on .397/.330/.747 shooting, along with 3.5 APG and 3.0 RPG.
Reserve wing Haywood Highsmith may now be in line for additional minutes, thanks to the extended absences of Herro and now Oladipo.
According to Ira Winderman of The South Florida Sun Sentinel (via Twitter), a formal timeline for Oladipo’s recovery has yet to be officially established.