There was really no way that Miami Heat coach Erik Spoelstra could forget about Michael Beasley in last night’s overtime loss against the Sacramento Kings the way he did on Christmas day against the Los Angeles Lakers. Not with four of his 15 players out with various nicks and ailments.
The injuries basically saved Spoelstra from another batch of Beasley fan backlash. But for the most part, things are going just as planned, particularly when it comes to the maintenance of Dwyane Wade:
“There’s a lot of things that are factoring into it,” Spoelstra said via the South Florida Sun-Sentinel. “Everybody assumes that we just want him healthy enough for the playoff run. That’s not our mentality with this. We want him getting stronger, healthier, quicker than he was last year. We also want his game to evolve, to where he’s able to do more things efficiently on the offensive end.”
This approach has proven to be very effective as Wade’s returns have been full of energy on both ends of the floor, and the world has seen the reemergence of the jump shot and athleticism that was missing the last year and a half. Although the team has struggled in plenty of those missed games, it’s been a smart move to occasionally pull Wade when he’s sore.
Unfortunately for coach Spoelstra, he’s been forced to “take the decision out” of multiple players’ hands — including Ray Allen (knees) and Chris Andersen (back), who suited up as the latest casualties of the young season. Apparently, coach Spo may find LeBron James in need of the next piece of maintenance.
“I’m not feeling too well right now,” said James via ESPN. “…I played [much of] the second half and overtime, and strained my groin. I’ll see how I feel on our trip to Portland tonight and into tomorrow. But it ain’t feeling too good right now.”
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