Miami Heat trying to keep backcourt afloat in wake of injuries
From NBA media reports
Miami Heat guard Goran Dragic ranks 29th among starting guards in points per game (17.3), a testament to how he has often driven the team’s success this season. As for the other spot in the Heat’s backcourt, that has been a revolving door all season that shows no sign of slowing down.
In the wake the ankle injury Tyler Johnson suffered Monday against Chicago, Miami’s backcourt depth continues to remain an issue for the team. A showdown with the Milwaukee Bucks tonight (8 ET, NBA League Pass) doesn’t provide a break in the Heat’s issue, which they are working to resolve, writes Ira Winderman of the South Florida Sun-Sentinel:
Then, when Johnson came up with a sudden shoulder/neck ailment last week, the Heat survived with Derrick Jones Jr., in the midst of a two-way contract, stepping into the starting role for road victories over the Toronto Raptors and Indiana Pacers.
Now, after an injury so severe that it led to Johnson being rolled to the Heat’s locker room in a wheelchair at the United Center, coach Erik Spoelstra finds himself at another crossroads, with Johnson listed as doubtful for Wednesday’s game against the Milwaukee Bucks at the BMO Harris Bradley Center.
Among the options, short of a return to health as quick as last week’s by Johnson, could be moving Jones back into the role, starting 3-point specialist Wayne Ellington, pushing Josh Richardson into the backcourt and starting Justise Winslow at small forward, or going with a big alignment that has both Kelly Olynyk and James Johnson at forward.
“We’re down so many guards,” center Hassan Whiteside said, “I feel like it’s a team of big men now.”