Jimmy Butler out for Heat vs. Celtics Because of Ankle Injury

Paul KasabianFeatured Columnist IIJanuary 31, 2022

Miami Heat forward Jimmy Butler (22) drives to the basket against Golden State Warriors guard Stephen Curry during the first half of an NBA basketball game in San Francisco, Monday, Jan. 3, 2022. (AP Photo/Jeff Chiu)
AP Photo/Jeff Chiu

Miami Heat forward Jimmy Butler has been ruled out for Monday's game against the Boston Celtics due to an ankle injury.

Butler played 52 minutes in a triple overtime loss to the Toronto Raptors on Saturday before being listed as questionable for the upcoming with a right ankle sprain. He had also been limited by a toe injury in recent days.

The five-time All-Star and four-time All-NBA player has been impressive when healthy, averaging 22.0 points, 6.3 rebounds, 6.3 assists and 1.9 steals per game. 

The 32-year-old is in his 11th NBA season and third in Miami. The Heat made the playoffs in each of his first two seasons, winning the Eastern Conference in 2019-20.

Unfortunately, injuries have sidelined Butler numerous times in 2021-22.

A right ankle sprain kept him out for three mid-November games. A tailbone contusion kept him out for four more. He returned on Dec. 6 for the Heat's 105-90 loss to the Memphis Grizzlies, but he reinjured his tailbone during the game and missed eight more contests.

Butler returned to the court on Dec. 26 against the Orlando Magic and played five straight games, but he suffered a right ankle injury against the Golden State Warriors on Jan. 3.

Bleacher Report @BleacherReport

Jimmy Butler was helped off of the court after an apparent right ankle injury.<br><br>Hoping for a speedy recovery 🙏 <a href="https://t.co/8NcgmqKXdz">pic.twitter.com/8NcgmqKXdz</a>

ESPN's Ohm Youngmisuk provided more context.

"Butler sustained the injury when he went to plant his right foot on a move but also appeared to lose his footing. He fell to the floor while holding the ball and was in pain as play was stopped with 3:14 left in the third quarter.
"Miami took a timeout, and Butler had to be helped off the floor by two Heat members as he was unable to put any weight on the ankle."

Butler missed three games and returned on Jan. 14 versus the Atlanta Hawks.

The Heat have been shorthanded all season due to the league's health-and-safety protocols in addition to injuries and personal reasons, with Bam Adebayo, Kyle Lowry and Tyler Herro notably missing time.

Miami has still excelled despite the roster's constant state of flux, and the Heat will have to adjust yet again.

Expect wings Duncan Robinson and Max Strus and guard Gabe Vincent to see more time with Herro and Adebayo assuming more responsibilities.