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Heat don’t expect Udonis Haslem back anytime soon

Mar 29, 2011, 9:01 PM EDT

Image (1) nba_g_haslem1_sw_576-thumb-250x140-15204.jpg for post 2933

The Miami Heat could really use Udonis Haslem. They could use the depth, the strength inside, the rebounding, the defense.

The Heat had hoped to get Haslem back from the torn ligament in his left foot by the start of the playoffs, but before tonight’s game in Cleveland Heat coach Erik Spoelstra said Haslem wouldn’t be evaluated again for about a month, according to Ethan Skolnick of the Palm Beach Post on twitter.

Meaning he may not be back until the playoffs are rolling at best.

ESPN’s NBA number’s guy John Hollinger said that no team is getting less out of players 4-12 on the bench than the Heat. (Minnesota and Cleveland round out your top three of badness.) Fitting in Mike Miller has been an issue, but Haslem fit in well before his November injury.

Adjusting to him again during the playoffs could be a serious challenge. However, with a second round matchup likely against Boston or Orlando — two teams with long front lines — having Haslem back could be key.

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