The Miami Heat have dealt with a plethora of injuries that two-way player Marcus Garrett has been a rotation player for the last five games. Prior to this stretch, Garrett was either with the Sioux Falls Skyforce or at the end of the bench.
By now, Heat fans know who’s been out — Jimmy Butler, Bam Adebayo, Victor Oladipo, Markieff Morris and Caleb Martin. And in Miami’s two recent games against the Detroit Pistons, two more rotation players have sustained injuries. P.J. Tucker left in the third quarter of Dec. 19’s loss to the Pistons, and Dewayne Dedmon left in the first quarter of Miami’s win over Detroit last night.
Fortunately, Dedmon is only expected to miss one to two weeks after an MRI revealed a Grade 1-Plus MCL sprain on his left knee.
Per Heat: An MRI on Dewayne Dedmon today revealed a Grade 1-Plus MCL Sprain of the Left Knee. He is expected to miss 1-to-2 weeks.— Anthony Chiang (@Anthony_Chiang) December 24, 2021
Big break for the Heat and Dedmon.
And Miami got some good news earlier today directly from two of those players — Martin and Morris.
I’m Free— Caleb Martin (@Calebmartin14) December 24, 2021
Martin’s tweet seems to indicate that he’s out of COVID-19 health and safety protocols and will be available for the Heat’s next game against the Orlando Magic Sunday. Before entering protocols, Martin was a key piece of Miami’s rotation.
Morris’ tweet is vague, but his return can’t come soon enough. With Adebayo, Dedmon and Tucker all injured, the Heat need as much front court help they can get. And remember that in an Oct. 30 game without Adebayo, Erik Spoelstra started Dedmon and played Morris as the backup center. Yurtseven didn't play until garbage time.
The Heat are notoriously tight-lipped about injuries — remember the secrecy surrounding Justise Winslow during the 2019-20 season? Spoelstra did not provide a timetable for Tucker’s return, and we don’t know when Butler — who started the season so well — will suit back up.
Erik Spoelstra on P.J. Tucker: "He's feeling better. We'll continue to evaluate him every day." Did not offer a timetable for a return.— Anthony Chiang (@Anthony_Chiang) December 21, 2021
But the Heat can barely field a team, and it’s because of injuries — not COVID-19. Getting Martin, Dedmon and Morris back would be a good start. But Butler and Tucker would be even better.