Pat Riley reveals good news regarding Terry Rozier's neck injury

Miami Heat v Houston Rockets
Miami Heat v Houston Rockets / Tim Warner/GettyImages

Pat Riley provided some clarity on the neck injury that sidelined guard Terry Rozier for the final month of the season, including the Miami Heat’s first-round series against the Boston Celtics, but declined to reveal an exact diagnosis.

“He wanted to play desperately. He couldn’t,” Riley said. “It’s going to heal. Doctors convinced us and him that in time this thing will heal and go away.”

Riley added that Rozier, who was listed as out with a neck sprain for Miami’s final four regular-season games and five playoff games, was in a neck brace when the two met last week for their exit interview.

The Miami Heat do not expect Terry Rozier's neck injury to be a long-term issue, according to Pat Riley.

“I see him with a neck brace on,” Riley said. “He said he feels good. He’s doing everything he’s [supposed to]. It’s a process. It takes time. When you’re dealing with a spine, you don’t mess around. You’re not going to mess around with it.”

The Heat do not believe Rozier’s injury is a long-term concern and look forward to what he can add next season. Riley said he was impressed with Rozier in his short stint following his acquisition from the Charlotte Hornets in January. 

In 31 games, Rozier averaged 16.4 points on 42.3% shooting and 4.6 assists. He memorably scored 11 points in the fourth quarter of a March game in Cleveland, including the game-winning step-back 3-pointer. Riley said Rozier lived up to his “Scary Terry” nickname.

“Terry was everything I expected,” Riley said.