It was previously reported that Herro was targeting Game 3 on Wednesday, June 7 for his return, but he may be able to come back earlier than that from the hand injury he suffered in the first round against the Milwaukee Bucks.
Reporting for NBA Today on Miami guard Tyler Herro’s timeline for a return in the NBA Finals pic.twitter.com/gDDW8E3ROh
— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) June 1, 2023
“I’m told that Game 2 on Sunday looms as a possibility for Tyler Herro,” Wojnarowski said. “He’ll have a couple more days here to test out that fractured right hand that is now healed. He’s on the court working out. Can that hand take contact?”
Wojnarowski explained that Herro needs to be able to absorb contact to be able to play. The University of Kentucky product is expected to test his hand to play Sunday. If he doesn’t play on Sunday, there is “confidence” that he could return for Game 3 in Miami.
The Heat would certainly benefit from adding a scorer of Herro’s caliber back into the rotation, but the team needs to make sure that he can be effective in the minutes he plays as well. Herro has not played since injuring his hand in the first round.
During the 2022-23 regular season, Herro averaged 20.1 points, 5.4 rebounds and 4.2 assists per game while shooting 43.9 percent from the field and 37.8 percent from beyond the arc.
Herro was named the league’s Sixth Man of the Year last season, and he has been one of Miami’s best scorers for multiple seasons. The team has been distributing Herro’s minutes to the likes of Max Strus, Gabe Vincent, Duncan Robinson, Kyle Lowry and even Haywood Highsmith in the postseason.
Prior to injuring his hand, Herro put together a strong first half against the Bucks in Game 1 of the first round. He scored 12 points on 5-of-9 shooting from the field. He also made two shots from beyond the arc in that game.
Denver is going to be a tough test for the Heat, as the Nuggets finished the regular season with the No. 1 seed in the Western Conference.
If Herro can return and be effective, the Heat certainly will have a better chance of winning their four title in franchise history.