MIAMI (CBSMiami/AP) — The Miami Heat hit the practice court for the first time since the All-Star break on Wednesday with a noticeable absence.
When it comes to Chris Bosh, the Heat are still waiting for definitive answers.
Apparently, so is Bosh.
The Heat leave for Atlanta on Thursday, and they’ll be without Bosh — who will spend the day meeting with more doctors as he keeps trying to find a way to play again this season. Miami resumed practice Wednesday without the All-Star forward, and neither the team nor Bosh has revealed that he has a blood clot.
A person with knowledge of the situation told The Associated Press on Tuesday that Bosh is on blood-thinning medication again to combat a clot in his leg.
“None of us are doctors. None of us are in the rooms with whatever’s going on,” Heat All-Star guard Dwyane Wade said. “A lot of people hear speculation on a lot of guys. I was around him, got a lot of opportunity to talk to him, to share things, and his spirits are very high. He’s doing everything he can to make sure that he figures going on within himself, but he’s very positive.”
All the Heat will say is that Bosh will not play Friday in Atlanta, and Bosh’s lone comment so far came on Snapchat — where he posted the Kendrick Lamar lyric, “We gonna be all right.”
“He will be with us shortly,” Heat coach Erik Spoelstra said.
So while there’s some optimism, others are predictably concerned.
“I texted him today and just told him I was sorry,” Cleveland’s LeBron James, Bosh’s former Miami teammate, said Wednesday. “I hate that he has to go through this again. … Just a great guy, man. Professional, great guy. For something like this to happen to him after he was cleared, it sucks. It sucks big-time.”
Bosh was declared out for the remainder of last season at the All-Star break when a clot was found on one of his lungs, a scare that threatened his career and his life. He returned to basketball activities a few months later, is averaging 19.1 points this season and said just last week he thought the clotting issue was behind him.
“I’m still positive,” Heat forward Udonis Haslem said. “I can’t say we’re going through the same roller-coaster yet.”
The worries for Miami right now are multi-layered.
Bosh’s health is paramount and there’s the well-being of his family; Bosh is a father of three and he and his wife are expecting twins in a few weeks. And there are short-term team issues as well, including how the Heat should proceed before Thursday’s trade deadline.
Miami is fifth in the East, two games back of third and two games ahead of eighth. A playoff berth would hardly seem guaranteed right now even with Bosh, who has $84 million or so remaining on his contract over the next 3 1-2 years. Being without Bosh — for any amount of time — makes the challenge that awaits over the next 29 games more daunting.
“If you’re a competitor, and you love to compete, this is an ideal situation to be in,” Haslem said. “I’m expecting us to lay it all on the line.”
Bosh’s latest health scare is another chapter in an often-trying Heat season, some of the other key sagas including:
— Gerald Green missing six games in November, four because of an undisclosed medical situation and two for conduct during that saga being detrimental to the team.
— Josh McRoberts getting hurt on the one-year anniversary of the injury that ended his 2014-15 season, missing 26 additional games this season.
— Tyler Johnson, who blossomed into a key performer for Miami, needing shoulder surgery that may end his season.
— Losing seven games in which Miami held double-digit leads.
— Assistant coach Keith Smart leaving the team twice while he deals with a rare form of skin cancer, though he is recovering well.
And now this. Even if the clot isn’t as daunting as the scare Bosh dealt with last year when one traveled to his lung and left him hospitalized in intense pain, it’s still a major issue.
Said Spoelstra: “Those kind of things also show you how fragile things are.”
(TM and © Copyright 2016 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2016 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)