Wade will sit Sunday with an ankle injury

April 8, 2012

MIAMI — As if Dwyane Wade missing two dunks Friday against Memphis wasn't bad enough, the result from one is Wade missing a game.

Miami coach Erik Spoelstra said his star guard won't play Sunday against Detroit at AmericanAirlines Arena. Wade tweaked an ankle on one of those attempts.

"It's a little bit swollen,'' Spoelstra said before the game. "It's nothing major. Certainly not at this point. It was a close decision.''

The Heat, though, will get back guard Mike Miller on Sunday after he missed 14 games because of a sprained left ankle. Spoelstra expects Miller to play against the Pistons.

It's the second game out of the past four Wade has missed. He sat out last Tuesday's game against Philadelphia because of a sore knee.

When announcing that injury, Spoelstra said he was "hopeful'' Wade would be back Wednesday against Oklahoma City, and he did return. So Spoelstra, whose team next faces Boston on Tuesday, was asked whether he would again call Wade "hopeful'' to return after missing one game.

"Day-to-day,'' Spoelstra said. "But I'll think that word.''

Spoelstra also was asked whether it was only the ankle bothering Wade or whether his knee was a factor, or whether simply giving him rest also played a role in the decision. Wade had said after the 97-82 loss to Memphis there was fatigue on the team, and he thought in pregame warmups it might catch up to the Heat.

"It's not rest in general, but that will be an ancillary benefit from this,'' Spoelstra said. "He was able to get (Saturday) a full day of rest and (Sunday) another full day of rest and (Monday) another day. He just jammed his ankle on that awkward dunk. He's sprained his ankles this season, so it's a little bit uncomfortable. We'll make sure we'll take care of that, and I'm sure the other things will continue to get better.''

As for Miller, Spoelstra had not been planning to use him a lot Sunday had Wade been able to play. He didn't believe Wade's absence would change his strategy.

"(Miller) had a good workout (Saturday),'' Spoelstra said. "Probably more likely to get some time. How much, I don't know.''

While nobody would suggest Miller is a better player than Wade, it is interesting to note the Heat are 9-1 this season without Wade and 16-10 without Miller. That includes going 8-4 when Miller was out to start the season after hernia surgery, and 8-6 when he was shelved because of the ankle injury.

Chris Tomasson can be reached at christomasson@hotmail.com or on Twitter @christomasson