After starter Gabe Vincent was ruled out with a disrupted left ankle, the Miami Heat will start Kyle Lowry at point guard against the Boston Celtics in Game 5 of the NBA Eastern Conference playoffs on Thursday.
During the latter stages of the Heat’s defeat in Game 4, Vincent suffered an injury after making an awkward landing while attempting to recover a lost ball close to the Heat’s bench. He had the tape reapplied and returned to that game, but the Heat decided that Vincent would not play in Game 5 because of the repercussions of the sprain.
The Miami Heat head into Thursday with a lead of 3-1 in the series and a second opportunity to play in the NBA Finals, this time against the Denver Nuggets.
In Miami’s first 15 postseason games, Vincent was the team’s starting quarterback. In the playoffs, he has recorded an average of 13.1 points per game, which ranks him third on the Heat behind Jimmy Butler and Bam Adebayo. While Vincent has been starting, Lowry has been coming off of the bench.
The Heat have been without two additional guards for most of their postseason games: Tyler Herro and Victor Oladipo. Following his recovery from a fractured hand, Herro has been given the green light to participate in certain basketball activities, but he will not be able to play for at least a few more days. Likewise, Oladipo will be out for the remainder of the season due to a ruptured patellar tendon.