--Among the prime topics of Heat conversation heading into Monday's Game 2 against the Knicks was the knee injury that has knocked Bulls guard Derrick Rose out for the balance of the playoffs.
"It (stinks), not only for the game of basketball, for the NBA, for Chicago, but for him," Heat forward LeBron James said. "As a fan, as a friend of his, you never want to see an injury like that happen. No matter if you're in competition against him no matter if you're playing against him, you never want to see a player go down like that.
"I think we know how much D-Rose means to this game; how much of a competitor he is."
Dwyane Wade said the news hit home.
"I said a prayer for him and his family," he said. "You never want to see anyone get injured, especially a player of his caliber. Very unfortunate. You hope he does his best to rehab and gets back to being the D-Rose that everyone loves."
--Not only is Rose out for the playoffs, but so is Knicks guard Iman Shumpert, who tore his ACL in the opener of this series.
That has had several players discussing the impact of the lockout-compacted regular season, including James.
"Look at Dwight Howard, who for the most part played in 98 percent of his games since high school and now he has a season-ending injury because of a back," James said. "And D-Rose, the same way. He's always been in the lineup and then this year.
"There's been so many injuries so many hamstring injuries and things like that, injuries that, it could be because of the shortened season."
QUOTE TO NOTE
"We're a much better team, much tougher to defend, when you don't know where the ball is going and the ball is moving freely. We ended up moving the ball for a lot of open shots, rather than settling for a lot of semi-contested or contested shots." -- Heat coach Erik Spoelstra, on his team's balanced offense Monday.
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