A three-day break will give a few injured Heat players some time to heal, and the team is cautiously optimistic that Jimmy Butler will be available for Saturday afternoon’s Game 3, writes Anthony Chiang of The Miami Herald. Butler suffered a sprained right ankle in the fourth quarter of the series opener and was a late scratch for Tuesday’s contest.
“His body will let you know, me know, him know, the team know,” coach Erik Spoelstra said. “There’s no way to predict it. But I’m glad we have a couple extra days.”
Miami is already playing without Tyler Herro, who suffered a broken right hand in the first-round series, and Victor Oladipo, who is out for the rest of the playoffs with a torn patellar tendon. Chiang states that Bam Adebayo is dealing with a strained left hamstring that has bothered him for most of the playoffs and Kyle Lowry is still experiencing pain in his left knee.
“Most of the year, we played every other day,” Gabe Vincent said. “So any time we get an extra day off, you take advantage of it. We’re looking forward to it. I know a lot of guys have kids and families and I’m happy they get some time to spend with them during this stressful time. But we’ll recuperate, get some treatment, rehab, whatever guys need and we’re looking forward to Game 3.”
There’s more from Miami:
- Max Strus had to leave Game 2 for a while with a lower back contusion, but he was able to return and doesn’t expect it to affect him for the rest of the series, Chiang adds. “I just fell on it, a little bruise,” he said. “It will be good to wait until Saturday.”
- Adebayo took the blame for Tuesday’s loss, Chiang states in another Miami Herald story. Miami’s center had 15 points, eight rebounds and six assists, but he only scored two points and pulled down one rebound in the fourth quarter. “I just got to play better,” Adebayo told reporters. “I feel like this game was on me and I lost it for us. I got to be better.”
- The Heat might have some interest in signing Grizzlies free agent Dillon Brooks if they can get him at a “bargain basement price,” Chris Mannix of Sports Illustrated speculated in an appearance on The Bill Simmons Podcast (hat tip to HoopsHype).