According to Anthony Chiang of The Miami Herald, a session with a Los Angeles physician over the weekend resulted in positive medical news regarding the condition of Heat All-Star small forward Jimmy Butler’s ailing right knee. Butler missed last night’s tight 126-123 victory for Miami over the Jazz.
Also, Jimmy Butler received positive news on his right knee when he met with a doctor in LA on Saturday. https://t.co/4xriFhWqSQ
— Anthony Chiang (@Anthony_Chiang) January 1, 2023
Butler is Miami’s best two-way player, so losing him for an extended period of time could have been terrible for the team. The swingman is averaging 21.8 PPG in 23 games this season on.528/.340/.829 shooting splits. For the 19-18 Heat, he also contributes 6.7 RPG, 5.8 APG, and 2.1 SPG.
There are additional developments from the Southeast Division:
$28.3MM Ira Winderman of The South Florida South Sentinel speculates that Heat starting point guard Kyle Lowry may have to raise his game in order to avoid permanently losing his spot in the team’s closing lineups. After two consecutive poor performances in back-to-back games against the Nuggets and Jazz, the 36-year-old was recently benched for the entire fourth quarter of Utah’s victory.
Jalen McDaniels, a fourth-year Hornets reserve small forward, recently discussed his difficult path to regular rotation time with Alex Kennedy of Basketball News. A lot of his rookie season was spent playing in the G League, which, according to McDaniels, “just gave me tremendous confidence by just letting me play through my mistakes and play a lot of minutes.” “Coming from the G League, playing so many games, and just knowing what to anticipate, I learned a lot about the game. I have the impression that my game is already locked in and I know exactly where I should be. McDaniels is averaging 10.6 PPG, 4.6 RPG, 2.2 APG, and 1.0 SPG in 25.9 MPG this season, which is a career-high.
Kelly Oubre Jr., the starting small forward for the Hornets, will miss at least a few games while he deals with an injured left hand, according to Roderick Boone of The Charlotte Observer. Coach Steve Clifford said, “He’s working, doing everything he can now to try and come back.” “Hopefully, in the coming days, we’ll learn more. The hand is amusing since it was recently repeatedly battered, twice in a short period of time. The pain was severe. He was obviously having a difficult time catching the ball. He unquestionably needs some time.