Before the NBA season started, Dwyane Wade was straight forward about his knees and status this season. The All-Star guard said he would not be 100 percent when the season started and he knew it would be a tough journey to get back to where he wants to be.
Wade was right and the numbers don’t lie. So far this season, Wade is only averaging 16.7 points per game. This is the first time he has averaged under 20 points since his rookie year with the Miami Heat.
Yes, Wade’s knees are a bit concerning and his stats make you slightly cringe, but it’s still early in the season and April is what counts. However, I would be more concerned that Wade’s knees aren’t getting any better and the star is on the downward slope of his career.
There will be stretches where Wade will need to sit a few games, especially this early in the season, but the main focus is back-to-back games and how Spoelstra should handle the star.
My honest and educated opinion: always sit Wade for half of back-to-backs for the majority of the season. Consecutive nights are tough even on healthy players, so imagine the toll they take on Wade’s ever deteriorating knees.
As for what part of consecutive games Wade should sit, it all depends on who the opponents are. Missing these two games against the Hawks and Magic is not big deal because they are not playoff contenders, but if the opponent is a top tier team, then Wade should play.
It all comes down to weighing the pros and cons and for the first half of the season, resting Wade when possible is a pro. The biggest factor in the decision to rest Wade will be the schedule, but a combination of rest and play will be important throughout the season for the long time Heat star.