MILWAUKEE — Continuity remains an abstract for the Miami Heat over this first week of the season, with center Bam Adebayo ruled out from Monday night’s game against the Milwaukee Bucks, due to a left hip contusion.
Injured during Saturday’s loss to the Minnesota Timberwolves on the second stop of this three-game trip, Adebayo bypassed the morning shootaround, attempted to warm up before Monday night’s game at Fiserv Forum, and then was ruled out 90 minutes before tip.
Adebayo’s absence came two nights after forward Jimmy Butler was held out of the loss in Minnesota for rest.
“He does not have enough movement,” coach Erik Spoelstra said, “and then hopefully will give a bunch of treatment and see what happens when we get back to Miami.”
Of the lack of early-season lineup continuity, Spoelstra said, “That doesn’t matter, This is the league and you have to adapt. We have enough guys that we know what we’re trying to do.”
Earlier, guard Josh Richardson said Monday he felt he is moving in the right direction from the preseason foot issues that had him away from the team.
In his second tour with the Heat, Richardson remained behind for the first two games of the three-game trip before arriving for Monday night’s game.
“It’s nice,” he said. “It’s good to be back with the guys.”
Richardson missed the road losses to the Boston Celtics and Timberwolves while working at Kaseya Center along with forward Haywood Highsmith, who will be sidelined for at least the balance of the week by a sprained left knee.
“Me and H have been back in Miami working, trying to get back,” Richardson said, with Highsmith yet to travel with the team since his injury.
From in front of his television, Richardson recognized where he might be able to help.
“Hopefully I can bring something positive to their mix, just a little ballhandling, a little pace,” he said after Monday morning’s shootaround. “Defensively, I think I can do some things for us.
“But it’s really about getting my feet wet, because I really didn’t have a preseason. So just trying to get back into the swing of things.”
Richardson, 30, was limited to two appearances and 28 total minutes in the Heat’s five-game preseason.
Spoelstra said having Richardson back with the team was a step forward.
“It’s great to have him here,” he said. “He’s really been making good progress back at home, working around the clock in our facilities, and we’ll just evaluable him.”
Heat seeing red
The NBA on Monday unveiled special courts that each of the 30 teams will use for their home games of the league’s new In-Season Tournament.
The Heat’s court will be predominantly red, with logos of the tournament trophy at center court and in each lane.
The court will only be used for the Heat’s In-Season Tournament games at Kaseya Center on Friday against the Washington Wizards and Nov. 28 against the Bucks, as well as for a possible quarterfinal game, should the Heat advance to a home game in that round.
Heat players were shown photos of the court at Monday’s shootaround.
“It’s interesting, for sure,” Richardson said. “It’s bright. I don’t think I’ve ever seen a court that bright before. So it should be interesting. I think they should do the glass floor with the graphics under it. Now that would be dope.”
Known for his eclectic fashion tastes, guard Tyler Herro was impressed.
“I like it,” he said. “I think it’s unique. It’s different than a regular court. And the games that we’re playing are different, too. So I think it goes hand in hand.”
The Heat have played on a variety of alternate courts over their 36 seasons, most notably in support of their Vice jerseys in recent years.
The Dame factor
With Damian Lillard having been linked to the Heat in offseason trade discussion, Spoelstra was asked Monday about now playing a Bucks lineup that includes Lillard.
“Basically the teams have been battling at the top of the East and in the playoffs have been the same teams for the last four years,” he said, “and you expect teams to try to upgrade and get competitive.”
Spoelstra said Heat-Bucks has to be about more than Lillard.
“It’s beyond all that,” he said. “It’s about our respect for Milwaukee and the battles we have.”
For Herro, Monday was his first time back at Fiserv Forum since breaking his hand in the first game of last season’s opening round of the playoffs.
“It feels good just being back out there, my first time playing here,” he said.
G League roster
The Heat’s G League affiliate, the Sioux Falls Skyforce, Monday released its 18-player training-camp roster, one loaded with players who had been with the Heat during the summer, in training camp or had signed with the team in recent months.
In addition, the Skyforce roster includes three players who had been signed by the Heat in the offseason: Jamaree Bouyea, Jon Elmore and Brandon McCoy.
Again in the mix for the Skyforce is former Broward College player Landon Kirkwood, who was with the Skyforce last season.