Miami Heat head coach Erik Spoelstra revealed that guard Josh Richardson and forward Haywood Highsmith are both in Miami to continue their rehab work.
The goal is to get the players back on the court as soon as possible, but they won’t be with the Heat on Friday night when the team takes on the Boston Celtics on the road.
Erik Spoelstra says Josh Richardson and Haywood Highsmith remained in Miami to continue their rehab work: "We’re trying to fast track that as much as we can. What does that mean? I don't know. But they’re getting the work that they need to there.”
— Anthony Chiang (@Anthony_Chiang) October 27, 2023
Richardson, who signed with the team in free agency this offseason, is dealing with a foot injury that also kept him out for the season opener against the Detroit Pistons on Wednesday.
The veteran was a second-round pick by the Heat in the 2015 NBA Draft, but he has played for several teams outside of Miami, including the Celtics, Dallas Mavericks, Philadelphia 76ers, New Orleans Pelicans and San Antonio Spurs.
Last season, Richardson played for the Spurs and Pelicans. He averaged 10.1 points, 2.7 rebounds and 2.7 assists per game across 65 contests (10 starts). The veteran shot the ball well from beyond the arc (36.5 percent), and he could certainly help the Heat in that department this season.
Once he’s healthy, Richardson figures to factor into the Miami rotation since the team lost Gabe Vincent and Max Strus this past offseason.
As for Highsmith, he’s dealing with a left MCL sprain. He missed the opener as well.
A strong defender, Highsmith appeared in 54 games for the Heat during the 2022-23 regular season and made 11 starts. He averaged 4.4 points and 3.5 rebounds in 17.9 minutes per game.
Jaime Jaquez Jr. played a notable role for the Heat in their win over the Pistons on Wednesday night. Miami’s injury situation may have been a factor in that.
Hopefully, the Heat will be able to get Richardson and Highsmith back soon, and it’s possible that having them stay in Miami will allow them to do more rehab work than they would have on the road.
After making the NBA Finals last season, the Heat are hoping to be in the same position in the 2023-24 season. Friday night’s matchup with Boston will be a nice test, as both teams made the Eastern Conference Finals in each of the last two seasons.