Just as we thought Justise Winslow was back, he appears to have suffered another setback. Miami Heat head coach Erik Spoelstra had more bad news regarding him on Friday morning.
Good news has been hard to come by for Justise Winslow in the first half of the 2019-20 season. He made his return on Wednesday after a 15-game absence with what was originally diagnosed as a back strain by Miami Heat medical staff, and then re-classified as a bone bruise.
He had a relatively quiet game, playing just 16 minutes and going scoreless with just two field goals, but he did stuff the boxscore with two rebounds, an assist, a steal and a block. The hope was that he could follow that up with a heavier workload as time went on, perhaps starting Friday night against the Brooklyn Nets, but it turns out those expectations will have to wait.
According to Ira Winderman of the Sun Sentinal, Justise Winslow has had a setback:
Winderman went on to say that Winslow was not made available for comment by the team, which leaves us with more questions than answers at this point.
It’s concerning that the Miami Heat have such an extensive track record of injuries holding key players out for long periods of time. A season ago Winslow, Goran Dragic, Dion Waiters, James Johnson and Derrick Jones Jr. all missed large chunks of the season, and this season Dragic has missed 10 games and Winslow has missed 26 to this point.
We can likely chalk it up to bad luck in a grueling and physical sport, but it’s no consolation for the Heat as they try to hang on tight to the second seed in the Eastern Conference.
Winslow’s absence will surely increase Jones’s workload once again, and it’s possible we may see James Johnson re-incorporated into the rotation once again after playing well in Jimmy Butler‘s absence almost a week ago.