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Jimmy Butler, Kendrick Nunn expected to miss Heat game vs. Suns

Toronto Raptors' Fred VanVleet shoots between Miami Heat's Jimmy Butler (22) and Tyler Herro (14) during the second half of an NBA basketball game Monday, Aug. 3, 2020, in Lake Buena Vista, Fla. (AP Photo/Ashley Landis, Pool)

The Miami Heat will be without All-Star Jimmy Butler and point guard Kendrick Nunn when the team tips off against the Phoenix Suns on Saturday, reports the Miami Herald.

Butler has missed two seeding games with foot soreness, and the Heat have gone 6-7 without him this season. He is averaging 20.2 points, 6.1 assists and 1.7 steals per game.

Nunn departed the team and the bubble on Friday for personal reasons.

Meanwhile, the status of former Suns point guard and key sixth man Goran Dragic remains up in the air for the Heat.

Dragic scored 20 points against the Boston Celtics on Tuesday but sprained his ankle. He was going to try to test his injury out Friday night.

The Suns, who have won their first four bubble games, could benefit by playing a team at less-than-100%. They must likely win three or all four of their remaining seeding games to earn a play-in spot to make the playoffs.

Miami has split its first four games in the Orlando bubble. Without Butler, the Heat beat the Celtics 112-106 on Tuesday before a 130-116 loss to the Milwaukee Bucks.

Dragic was not available against Milwaukee, allowing the Bucks to target young Miami big man Bam Adebayo into a 2-for-10 shooting outing. The Heat still put up points, with sniper Duncan Robinson going for 21 points and backup rookie guard Tyler Herro adding 20 as head coach Erik Spoelstra kept with a nine-player-deep rotation.

As for the health of the Suns, general manager James Jones on Arizona Sports’ Bickley & Marotta did not reveal any new information about the statuses of wing Kelly Oubre Jr. (knee) and center Aron Baynes (conditioning), who have not played but remain with the team in Orlando.

Jones only said he was “hopeful” the duo can return at some point in the bubble.


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