The Miami Heat will get to know what life without their vaunted Big Three would look like on Wednesday night. According to the Heat's official Twitter feed, Dwyane Wade (ankle), Chris Bosh (illness) and LeBron James (hamstring) will all miss tonight's game against the Washington Wizards at the Verizon Center:
Without the trio of stars, Mike Miller, Rashard Lewis and Joel Anthony will all get a rare start, per the team's Twitter feed:
While those who have tickets for the game are undoubtedly going to be disappointed, the Big Three being absent is of little shock. The Heat have been increasingly judicious down the stretch with their stars, having long-since secured home-court advantage throughout the Eastern Conference playoffs and having a comfortable lead for best record in the NBA.
That being said, this will be the first time all season coach Erik Spoelstra has rested all three of his high-priced stars.
Wade has missed each of the past five games with his sprained ankle, an injury that he has admitted may keep him out until the postseason. Bosh and James, however, have joined a rotating cast of players in the starting lineup that has somehow gone 4-1 in Wade’s absence.
Bosh played through the initial resting period for James, but he has gone down with a nasty illness that left his status extremely doubtful heading into Wednesday night.
James missed three games previously with the hamstring injury, but he had played in each of Miami’s past two contests. He put up a customary 28 points, seven rebounds and seven assists in Tuesday night’s win over the Milwaukee Bucks and looked healthy in his 30 minutes of action.
However, with soreness still lingering in his hamstring, Miami is understandably being cautious with its superstar. The Heat are on the second night of a back-to-back—a difficult proposition for any team this late in the season—and they have little incentive to go all-out against Washington.
One San Antonio loss or Miami win the rest of the season would lock up home-court advantage through the NBA Finals. Having won 31 of their past 33 games, the Heat are more than comfortable with their ability to win one game down the stretch.
And if the secondary stars somehow pull off an upset of the Wizards on Wednesday, one has to wonder whether we’ve seen the last of Miami’s Big Three this regular season altogether.