Updates from Sunday, June 8
Chris Sheridan of Sheridan Hoops provides an update on Chris Anderson's status:
Spoelstra said Birdman had a great practice Saturday. He may play more than in Game 1, but will not start.— Chris Sheridan (@sheridanhoops) June 8, 2014
Updates from Tuesday, June 3
The Heat provide an update on Andersen's status:
Chris Andersen (who was held out of yesterday's practice) was limited to conditioning today. http://t.co/adVn8dlsw5— Miami HEAT (@MiamiHEAT) June 3, 2014
Updates from Friday, May 30
Jason Lieser of the Palm Beach Post provides an update on Chris Andersen's status for Game 6:
Miami's Chris Andersen (thigh bruise) is ACTIVE tonight. Missed last 2 games.— Jason Lieser (@PBPjasonlieser) May 30, 2014
Updates from Wednesday, May 28
Brian Windhorst of ESPN provided the latest news on Chris Andersen's status for a potential series-clincher against the Indiana Pacers:
Chris Andersen (thigh) & Ray Allen (hip) did not take part in shootaround and are gametime decisions for Game 5 tonight.— Brian Windhorst (@WindhorstESPN) May 28, 2014
The Heat's official Twitter feed has bad news regarding Andersen:
Tonight’s #HEATplayoffs Game 5 inactives vs the Pacers - Chris Andersen (left thigh contusion) & Justin Hamilton.— Miami HEAT (@MiamiHEAT) May 28, 2014
Miami Heat power forward Chris Andersen was ruled out of Monday's Eastern Conference Finals Game 4 against the Indiana Pacers after suffering a bruise to his left thigh in Saturday's Game 3 win, according to USA Today's Jeff Zillgitt on Twitter:
Heat big man Chris Andersen inactive for Game 4 with a bruised left thigh. Erik Spoelstra called him "the human bruise" on Sunday.— Jeff Zillgitt (@JeffZillgitt) May 26, 2014
Although the veteran big man has scored just six total points since his 14-point outburst in Miami's Game 1 loss to Indiana, he's been a critical factor for the defending champions on the boards and defensively in the paint.
The 35-year-old has combined to pull down 19 rebounds in Miami's previous two victories.
The Miami Herald columnist Joseph Goodman explains Andersen's underrated impact:
Andersen is averaging 11.8 rebounds and 10.3 points per 36 minutes in the Eastern Conference finals, so his absence is significant.— Joseph Goodman (@JoeGoodmanJr) May 26, 2014
And there's no doubt Andersen's play has sparked the Heat's resurgence on the defensive side of the ball, as noted by head coach Erik Spoelstra ahead of Game 4, per Heat beat writer Ira Winderman:
Erik Spoelstra, on where Heat defense stands. "I would say, in general, it's more to our overall identity . . . but we're not there yet."— Ira Winderman (@IraHeatBeat) May 26, 2014
At 6'10", 245 pounds, Andersen has the size and strength to make life difficult for Roy Hibbert, David West, Luis Scola and the rest of Indiana's bigs. Therefore, his recovery is sure to leave a mark on this series.
Although Spoelstra and the rest of the Heat players will certainly miss "Birdman's" presence and energy, with LeBron James, Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh leading the way, the Heat will still have an excellent shot to hold serve at home and take a 3-1 series lead back to Indiana on Monday.
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