Report: HEAT Fears Dion Waiters’ Season Is In Doubt Due to Ankle Sprain
Report // 12 months ago
By: Miami Heat Beat Staff
It may be time to sell your share in Waiters Island.
Dion Waiters remains out indefinitely after suffering a sprained left ankle during Friday’s matchup against the Minnesota Timberwolves. While Waiters and the HEAT hope he can return in time for a playoff push, it seems like that might not be the case.
Sources tell Miami Heat Beat that the team fears Waiters’ injury is a grade 3 ankle sprain, a complete tear of the ligament, one that would require a six-to-eight week recovery period that would keep him out for at least the remainder of the regular season. An MRI has yet to be scheduled because of swelling.
Waiters sprained the same ankle last month in Minnesota and missed three games, but told the media on Sunday that this recent sprain felt worse than the last one:
I haven’t felt pain like this in so long. The last time I had one of these was the last time I broke my ankle in high school. Even when I did [sprain the ankle] in Minnesota, it was a week and a couple of days. I wasn’t 100 percent, but it wasn’t as severe as this one.
This injury couldn’t have come at a more inopportune time for Waiters. Waiters is in the midst of a break-out season, averaging 15.8 points and 4.3 assists while shooting 42.3 percent from the field and 39.4 percent from deep. He’s been on fire since Jan. 14, averaging 18.4 points and 4.8 assists while shooting 46.7 percent from the field and a blistering 44.5 percent from deep.
Beyond the numbers, Waiters has served as a tertiary ball-handler and playmaker alongside Goran Dragic. His ability to break down defenses, get into the paint and create scoring opportunities for himself and others has been invaluable during Miami’s playoff push. On the other end, his feisty on-ball defense and ability to fight over screens has helped Miami’s conservative defensive scheme work.
Without Waiters, the HEAT have to hope they can get improved play from guards Josh Richardson and Wayne Ellington, both of whom have struggled recently.