Waiters (ankle) expects to be a full participant when training camp opens in September, Shandel Richardson of the South Florida Sun Sentinel reports.
Waiters was limited to just 30 appearances in his second season with the Heat in 2017-18 after requiring surgery in January to address instability in his left ankle. The veteran guard has already resumed on-court activities and should soon be able to engage in full-court, five-on-five workouts, which represents the final benchmark he'll need to clear in his recovery. Waiters may get the opportunity to compete with Tyler Johnson and Wayne Ellington for a starting role at shooting guard during camp, though the 26-year-old may be a better fit on the second unit.
Waiters (ankle) resumed on-court activities Tuesday for the first time since undergoing surgery in January, Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald reports.
Waiters' presence on the court months before training camp is an encouraging sign, but it's still uncertain if he'll be cleared for full participation when the Heat reconvene in late September. The shooting guard inked a four-year, $52 million contract with Miami last summer despite dealing with a pre-existing navicular bone fracture, which limited him to just 30 games in 2017-18 before he required the procedure to address the injury. Prior to being shut down, Waiters averaged 14.3 points, 3.8 assists, 2.6 rebounds and 1.7 three-pointers in 30.6 minutes per contest while shooting 39.8 percent from the field and 30.6 percent from downtown.
Waiters (ankle) has progressed to "court work" but is not yet playing in pickup games, Ira Winderman of the South Florida Sun Sentinel reports.
Waiters underwent surgery in late January to address an injured left ankle, which cut his year short, as he appeared in just 30 games. The campaign marked his second straight year dealing with injuries, as he played in 46 games during the 2016-17 campaign as a result of groin and ankle issues. That said, the hope now is that Waiters can put his ankle problems behind him and resume being a go-to scoring option for the Heat. Over the past two seasons, the guard has averaged 15.2 points, 4.1 assists and 3.0 rebounds in 30.3 minutes per game. However, he's struggled with efficiency, shooting only 41.4 percent from the field, 35.6 percent from deep and 67.9 percent from the charity stripe during that stretch. It's unclear if he'll have the same exact role moving forward, as other Heat players have stepped up in his absence. Notably, Josh Richardson was a force on both ends of the floor and was crucial in Miami's success during 2017-18, averaging 12.9 points, 3.5 rebounds, 2.9 assists and 1.5 steals in 33.2 minutes with higher efficiency than Waiters.
Waiters (ankle) underwent successful surgery on his ankle Monday and has officially been ruled out for the rest of the 2017-18 season, Manny Navarro of the Miami Herald reports.
Waiters' procedure was to address instability in his left ankle, though he apparently also had a preexisting navicular bone fracture that was repaired as well. While the Heat didn't provide an exact timetable for a return, Ira Winderman of the South Florida Sun-Sentinel reports that the expected recovery could be anywhere from six to nine months. That brings Waiters' status for training camp into question, though we should continue to get updates throughout the offseason on how he's progressing. Wayne Ellington, Josh Richardson, Tyler Johnson and Derrick Jones are all expected to benefit with added minutes now that Waiters is done for the year.
Waiters has decided to undergo season-ending surgery on his injured left ankle after receiving second opinions, Shams Charania of Yahoo Sports reports.
Prior to this decision, Waiters had been resting and rehabilitating the ankle, but it was unclear if he had been making significant progress. Considering he'll undergo surgery to correct the issue, it seems doubtful he was recovering as hoped. He missed 13 games last season due to a sprain of the same ankle, but ultimately opted to decline surgery, as he was entering free agency, where he ended up signing a four-year, $52 million deal with the Heat. Regardless, with him now sidelined for the remainder of the 2017-18 campaign, coach Erik Spoelstra will seemingly continue relying on Tyler Johnson, Wayne Ellington and Josh Richardson to hold down the shooting guard position.
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