Mar 3, 2014, 7:22 PM EDT
Dwyane Wade hasn’t played more than six straight games in 2014, and that won’t change tonight.
Wade has played in each of Miami’s last six contests, averaging 21.4 points on 62 percent shooting with 5.8 assists, 5.0 rebounds and 1.4 steals per game. If the Heat get this Wade in the playoffs, they’ll likely be celebrating their third straight championship this June.
But, in March, they’re not pressing their luck.
Dwyane Wade out tonight vs. Charlotte. "No setback," Spoelstra says. Just getting some rest.—
Tom Haberstroh (@tomhaberstroh) March 03, 2014
Toney Douglas to start in place of Dwyane Wade tonight. Wade and James Jones are inactive. DeAndre Liggins is active.—
Ira Winderman (@IraHeatBeat) March 03, 2014
The Heat have remained strong without Wade this season (offensive rating: 110.1/defensive rating: 103.4/net rating: +6.8).
However, the lineup with Douglas and the other starters (111.6/114.4/-2.7) has struggled in 25 minutes. One, that’s a small sample. Two, I don’t think Erik Spoelstra cares. He’s starting Douglas over Ray Allen to preserve everyone else’s spot in the rotation – the spots they’ll hold when Wade returns.
The Heat are going full steam ahead planning to have Wade when it counts, and decisions like tonight’s are why they believe that will happen.
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