The Miami Heat are listing Dwyane Wade as “questionable” for Friday night’s home game against the Milwaukee Bucks. Anthony Chang of the Miami Herald reports the 37-year old guard has suffered a bruise on his right elbow.
UPDATE: NumberFire reports he will be available.
Wade, who has played as Miami’s sixth man in his final NBA season, is averaging 14.1 points on 43.6 percent shooting, 3.7 rebounds and 4.2 assists so far in 2018-19.
The Heat guard has missed 10 games in his final NBA season — seven because of paternity leave, one because of general soreness, one because of an illness and one because of right knee soreness for the Jan. 30 game matchup with the Chicago Bulls.
The Heat is 4-6 without Wade this season. He sparked their recent run at the NBA Playoffs by beating the buzzer on Feb. 27 in a 126-125 victory over the Golden State Warriors.
Since then, Miami is 5-2 and has moved into 8th place in the Western Conference finals. The Heat’s potential first round matchup would be against the very same Bucks they play tonight in South Beach (8 p.m., NBA TV).
NBA Playoff Implications
Miami is only 1.5 games ahead of the Orlando Magic for the final seed. All hands will need to be on deck to extend Wade’s farewell tour into the postseason.
According to Playoff Status, the Heat possess just a 46 percent chance at making the playoffs. That also breaks down to 20 percent for the 8-seed, 17 percent for the 7 and only 9 percent for the 6-seed.
The potential playoff matchups would project to be the Bucks, the Raptors and the Sixers.
ESPN’s BPI also predicts a No. 8 seed, as it sees Miami finishing with a 38-44 record. It also gives the Heat under 50 percent odds at making the playoffs (just 47.4 percent).
Tonight’s game against the Bucks could swing the odds heavily in Miami’s favor. Per Playoff Status, a Heat win bumps the playoff hopes to 58 percent, including 22 percent at both the 7 and 8-seeds.
Unfortunately, head coach Erik Spoelstra can’t afford to rest his rotation down the stretch. His team faces one of the harder remaining schedules in the East according to Playoff Status. Out of the remaining 15 games, they have under 50 percent odds at winning in 11 of them per Team Rankings.
That includes 9 games against current playoff teams. The Heat play Milwaukee and Boston twice, at Oklahoma City and San Antonio and a final stretch of Toronto, Toronto and Brooklyn.
In the meantime, Spoelstra will have to push Wade through any ailments. Spoelstra may have to increase usage from Josh Richardson and Goran Dragic.