MIAMI — Heat coach Erik Spoelstra said after this morning’s shootaround that Chris Bosh’s availability will be a game-time decision for tonight’s Game 5 against the Celtics. Bosh was able to take part in both Monday’s practice and today’s shootaround.
“We’ll just have to continue to evaluate,” Spoelstra said. “It’s been encouraging this past week. The last two days he’s been able to do real basketball work. He’s been able to do a lot more. He can’t test it like he normally would in a regular season game or a full-scale practice.”
The biggest question now is how the Heat will reintegrate Bosh back into the lineup when he is available, whether that’s tonight or later in the series. The team has been playing without the power forward since he suffered a strained abdominal muscle on May 13 against the Pacers.
“He’s been out for a while, so whenever he gets back on the floor it’s going to take a while to get his rhythm back,” Dwyane Wade said. “But just another key component to our team.”
Spoelstra said the bigger adjustment was the one the team needed to make to play without Bosh, rather than bringing him back into the fold.
“What we’ve done without him is significantly different, no question,” Spoelstra said. “We’ve had to reinvent ourselves.
“If it happens, that’s a much easier challenge, and something we would gladly look forward to, rather than the alternative. It’s an easier challenge to assimilate him because of his skill level and where he plays on the court. He helps us space the court, we play through him on the high post. All of those things we’ve been doing naturally now for two years. Doing that without him was the challenge.”
Spoelstra said he would be using the afternoon to consult with Bosh as well as the training staff to determine his availability, as well as how much he might be able to play if he can go.