Heat Notes: Martin, Rozier, Herro, Adebayo, Robinson, Mills

Heat forward Caleb Martin understands that his high-energy approach to the game can be most effective in a sixth-man role, writes Ira Winderman of The Sun-Sentinel. After a breakout performance in last year’s Eastern Conference Finals, Martin has returned to a reserve spot this year, coming off the bench in 19 of the 52 games he has played. Amid numerous lineup changes due to injuries, coach Erik Spoelstra has tried to keep Martin’s role constant.

“I really don’t care. I really don’t,” Martin said. “Like I said, the biggest thing for me is getting minutes and finishing games. So it ultimately doesn’t matter if you come off the bench. If I’m playing 25, 30 minutes and I’m finishing games, I’m going to be able to produce.”

With a $7.1MM player option for next season, Martin is likely to test free agency this summer, Winderman adds. He’s also dealing with the distraction of a sprained left thumb that will probably need surgery after the season is over. He keeps it taped during games and wears a leather brace when he’s not playing.

“It’s something minor. It’s nothing crazy or I wouldn’t be able to still be playing on it,” Martin said. “So it would be different if it was a different kind of injury. So it’s one of those things that’s a pretty quick fix.”

There’s more from Miami:

  • Spoelstra will likely stagger the minutes between Terry Rozier and Tyler Herro whenever Herro returns from his right foot injury, Winderman states in a separate story. They have similar skills as shot creators, and Winderman notes that it could be valuable to have them on the court together late in close games.
  • Bam Adebayo is looking forward to returning after sitting out Wednesday’s game with a lower back contusion, according to Anthony Chiang of The Miami Herald. Adebayo is listed as questionable for tonight’s contest with New Orleans, and he expressed hope that he’ll be ready to play. “I sat down and had a conversation with coach,” Adebayo said. “We got guys back, so he told me it was time to take (a night off).”
  • A scan of Duncan Robinson‘s back didn’t reveal any significant issues, league sources tell Chiang. Robinson was diagnosed with left facet syndrome after returning home early from the road trip to see a back specialist, but he’s not believed to be facing a lengthy absence.
  • Patty Mills has made a smooth transition since signing with Miami on March 6, Chiang observes in another piece. Injuries have opened up a rotation role, and the veteran guard has logged double-digit minutes in seven straight games. “The surprising part is how comfortable and quickly that I’ve been able to pick up on some stuff,” Mills said. “Then after that, what can you do to impact the team in a positive way. I think that’s been probably the most surprising part, if anything.”
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