Mario Chalmers will start for the Miami Heat against the New York Knicks on Thursday, Dec. 6. The fifth-year veteran injured his finger against the Washington Wizards and was expected to miss some time as a result.
UPDATE: Thursday, Dec. 6 at 7:45 p.m. by Mike Hoag
Ira Winderman, Heat beat writer for the South Florida Sun-Sentinel, announced the team's starting lineup on Thursday afternoon (via Twitter):
New Heat lineup tonight: Bosh, Haslem, LeBron, Wade and Chalmers.— Ira Winderman (@IraHeatBeat) December 7, 2012
Chalmers bounced back quickly from a tendon injury in his finger against the Washington Wizards on Tuesday night. To be able to not only play but start two nights later shows his resilience and desire to help his team.
The Knicks are the Heat's biggest competition in the East and Miami is much better off having their point man in the lineup for this one.
---End of Update---
The South Florida Sun-Sentinel’s Ira Winderman reported via Twitter that Chalmers will miss the next few games:
Looks like a week to 10 days without Mario Chalmers due to tendon issue with finger sustained Tuesday in Washington.— Ira Winderman (@IraHeatBeat) December 5, 2012
Chalmers injured his finger in a shocking 105-101 loss to the Washington Wizards. He ended up logging just 10 minutes in the contest and did not score a point.
The result gave the Wizards just their second victory of the season, but the Heat are still tied with the New York Knicks for the best record in the Eastern Conference despite dropping to 12-4.
Chalmers has adjusted to a slightly different role in the Miami backcourt this season, and has been averaging less points but more assists.
With the arrival of Ray Allen, he has played fewer minutes and is averaging just 6.4 points per game, compared to 9.8 a season ago. But his assists-per-game average has risen from 3.5 in 2011-12 to 4.3 this year.
Along with Ray Allen and Norris Cole, Chalmers helped provide depth to the Heat’s backcourt, and the three guards have excelled as role players this season.
The Heat will start a six-game home stand on Thursday night when they host the New York Knicks. Chalmers was originally believed to be out for the showdown between the East’s two top teams.
The original time-frame Winderman provided projected the 26-year-old would be back on the court for the final two home games of the upcoming stretch, and would have certainly been ready to play when the team hit the road again for a game against the Dallas Mavericks on December 20.
Check back here for updates on Chalmers’ condition going forward.