Miami Heat center Bam Adebayo and point guard Goran Dragic will miss Friday night’s Game 2 of the NBA Finals against the Los Angeles Lakers due to injuries sustained in Wednesday night’s Game 1 loss.
Adebayo, who had not previously missed a game this season, is dealing with a neck strain that resulted from a second-half collision Wednesday with Lakers center Dwight Howard.
Dragic, who had emerged as a playoff starter after spending the regular season as a reserve, is being treated for a torn planter fascia in his left foot sustained in the second quarter of Wednesday’s loss.
Both had been listed as doubtful on the Heat’s injury report. ESPN first reported the Adebayo update, The Athletic the Dragic update.
The only previous time this season the Heat played without both Adebayo and Dragic was the Aug. 14 regular-season finale against the Indiana Pacers, when the two were held out ostensibly for rest in the loss that had no impact on playoff seeding.
In the 428 postseason minutes that Adebayo and Dragic have been on the court together, the Heat have outscored the opposition by 55 points. In the 98 minutes they have been off together, the Heat have been outscored by 42, per the NBA.
The NBA Finals continue Sunday at 7:30 p.m. at Disney’s Wide World of Sports complex, where the games are being held in a quarantine setting amid the new coronavirus pandemic.
Coach Erik Spoelstra said Adebayo’s injury is not related to a shoulder injury sustained during the Eastern Conference finals against the Boston Celtics.
“It’s on the same side,” Spoelstra said, “so it’s easy to draw a comparison, but it’s a different injury.”
Former starting center Meyers Leonard and reserve big man Kelly Olynyk remain options for Adebayo’s vacated minutes, with Kendrick Nunn available for Dragic’s minutes.
“At this point, it’s all hands on deck,” Spoelstra said. “And it’s not like the guys that we’re potentially sliding into the rotation haven’t played before. These guys have confidence and have played big roles for us all year long. Our depth has been one of our biggest strengths. It’s not just coach speak. We’ve utilized our depth all year long.”
©2020 the Sun Sentinel (Fort Lauderdale, Fla.)
Visit the Sun Sentinel (Fort Lauderdale, Fla.) at www.sun-sentinel.com
Distributed by Tribune Content Agency, LLC.