Both the Miami Heat and Dallas Mavericks say there’s more to their game tonight than revisiting NBA finals memories.
For Miami, there’s concern over the finger LeBron James dislocated and popped back into place this week, along with a two-game losing streak that left the Heat farther behind Chicago in the Eastern Conference.
James said the injury to the ring finger on his non-?shooting hand was one of the most painful he can remember. “The only recovery for it, the doctors told me, was rest,” James said. “And I think we all know I’m having none of that.”
For Dallas, there’s a desire to keep climbing toward playoff form after losing 11 out of 18 in one recent stretch, plus a sense of wanting some payback after the Heat went into the Mavs’ building to start this season and opened a 35-point lead.
It’s Dallas’ first time in Miami since winning last year’s title. Even Mavs owner Mark Cuban says he’s taking a businesslike approach to the trip, leaving his championship ring at home.
Curry still out
Stephen Curry is still holding out hope to return this season.
The Golden State Warriors announced Wednesday that Curry will be sidelined at least two more weeks with a sprain in his surgically repaired, troublesome right ankle. He will be re-evaluated after that time, and it’s still unlikely he’ll play again this season.
Curry has had repeated setbacks with his ankle since being drafted in 2009. He had surgery on the ankle last summer. After multiple sprains this season, he has sought the opinion of three different doctors and even traveled to Nike headquarters for a custom-fitted shoe.
Injuries hurt Knicks
The New York Knicks hope to have Amare Stoudemire back before the end of the season after a second doctor said he won’t need surgery on the bulging disk in his back.
The Knicks said Wednesday they expect Stoudemire to miss two to four weeks while he is being treated. They had previously said he was out indefinitely after an MRI revealed the injury on Monday.
Point guard Jeremy Lin also missed their game against Orlando on Wednesday because of a sore left knee.
Van Gundy rips Williams
Stan Van Gundy said Wednesday the notion that Kentucky could beat an NBA team is “absurd.”
The Orlando Magic coach was asked about comments by former Maryland coach Gary Williams, who told a Washington radio station that he thought the Wildcats could beat the NBA’s Wizards in one game at Rupp Arena.
The Wildcats, the favorites to win the NCAA championship next week, have multiple players who are expected to be NBA lottery picks. Forward Anthony Davis could be the No. 1 overall pick if he enters the draft.
That’s not enough for Van Gundy. “Look, it’s absurd,” he said before the Magic faced the New York Knicks. “I mean, people will say, ‘Oh, Kentucky you know’s got four NBA players.’ Yeah, well, the other team’s got 13.”
No MSG for draft
The NBA draft will be held at the Prudential Center in Newark, N.J., for the second straight year. Madison Square Garden is undergoing offseason renovations. The draft is scheduled for 7 p.m. June 28.