The Miami Heat are getting a key contributor back for Game 3 against the Boston Celtics on Saturday night. After missing the first two games of the Eastern Conference finals with a hamstring strain, veteran guard Kyle Lowry will make his debut in this series in Game 3, the team announced. Lowry has been dealing with the same injury since the first round of the postseason, and as a result, he has played in just five games for the Heat during the playoffs so far.
While speaking with media members after shootaround on Saturday, Heat coach Erik Spoelstra made it clear that if he does play, Lowry probably won't play major minutes. Still, any boost he can provide Miami will be beneficial.
"Obviously you have a Hall of Fame point guard," Spoelstra said of Lowry, via the Sun-Sentinel. "It won't be 40 minutes. But whatever his minutes are, he has the experience and resume. You can't necessarily put a weight to it; you just know what it means to your team, especially in a building like this, on the road."
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In addition to Lowry, veteran forward P.J. Tucker will also play in Game 3. Tucker injured his knee in Game 2, but the swelling has subsided since and he didn't undergo an MRI for the injury, according to Chris Haynes. When it comes to playing through pain and injury, Spoelstra sees Tucker as a throwback type of player.
"I think all of us, you're kind of on eggshells with him," Spoelstra said of Tucker. "You can't ask him how he's doing. I can't ask a trainer, because if he sees me talking to a trainer, he barks at me and yells at me if I'm talking to the trainers. I'm allowed to talk to the trainers, that is part of my job. But he is a throwback by every definition of that."
Lowry and Tucker both playing in Game 3 is obviously the best-case scenario for the Heat, who can use all the help that they can get in what has already proven to be an extremely tough series against the Celtics.