MIAMI – Tyler Johnson was upset the Heat held him out of the second half Thursday against the Bulls after rolling his right ankle earlier in the game.
Johnson will be a lot happier tonight when he is in the lineup tonight against the Nets. Johnson is ready to go after two days of rest and rehabilitation.
“He’s going,” coach Erik Spoelstra said after the Heat’s shootaround. “He’s mad at us that he didn’t get to finish in the second half. The way this season has gone that was the no-brainer of no-brainers. Have a seat, do some treatment.”
“The reality is the play looked very similar to the one in Chicago (in January) and we wanted to have a little bit of discretion and at least observe him and see how it felt the next day without having to re-aggravate it in the second half. I still believe it was the right move.He’s ready to go. Two good days of work.”
Johnson sprained his ankle midway through the second quarter when he cut to the basket, took the pass from James Johnson, challenged Bulls center Robin Lopez while making the layup and then landed on Lopez’s right foot.
A hobbled Johnson came out about four minutes later. He then went to the locker room before the half ended and did not return. Johnson had six points, making half of his six shots.
“It was one of those situations where it was sore and I think it was more of a precaution to protect me from myself especially with my past, they didn’t want me to push it way too hard,” Johnson said. “I felt like that was a game we had control of so it was just precaution and protecting me from myself.”
Johnson, who has started 66 games this season, the last 11 in a row, said he didn’t even think about the ankle during today’s shootaround. “Right now it’s not that bad,” he said. He missed five games earlier when Lopez landed on his left foot stretching ligaments in his ankle and Achilles during a game in Chicago two and half months ago.
“The other one was unique because it turned in the opposite way,” Johnson said. “The severity of it, it’s gonna take a little bit longer because usually those ligaments are never stretched that way. This one was just traditional, whatever, turned it over, turned right back. It was taped so it wasn’t that bad.”