ATLANTA -- Dwyane Wade was held out of his second game in a row with lingering knee soreness Monday and could also miss Tuesday's game against the Boston Celtics at AmericanAirlines Arena.
Looking visibly frustrated with having to miss another game, Wade reported he was a late scratch less than an hour before tipoff at Philips Arena. Wade missed the Heats game against the Bobcats on Friday after scoring just eight points in consecutive games against Washington and Philadelphia.
Its just a little soreness in my knee, Wade said. So, I just want to take another day, hopefully, and it feels better [Monday]. If not, then well reevaluate it later.
Wade has missed 11 games this season, which reached its midpoint on Sunday. Asked whether the Heat was in an ideal position at the seasons halfway point, Wade said, I dont know.
We had a challenge that was just presented to us in winning three in a row and well see how we respond to it as we go into next week with our home stand, Wade said. I think well see then, but right now its hard.
Ray Allen started for Wade for the second straight game. Allen has had his own struggles, though. He was shooting 22.2 percent from the field and 11.8 percent from three-point range in January after Fridays game against the Bobcats.
The Heat has used 12 different starting lineups this season with the Opening Night starting lineup of Wade, Mario Chalmers, LeBron James, Shane Battier and Chris Bosh playing together in just 16 games. Twelve players have started at least one game.
Its always difficult when you dont have everyone available every night, but most of the league deals with that, Wade said. I think our team has done a good job with the adversity that weve faced with the injuries and guys in and out. The best thing is we havent lost a guy for the year yet.
Weve had guys who have been out, but theyve been able to come back. Were blessed with that we knock on wood and we say if this is the worst we have to go through, then were fine. So, were going to continue to try whoever is in the lineup. We have the team and we have the personnel that can win on any given night.
Despite the piecemeal lineups, the Heat had a chance to tie its second-best record at the midway point of a season against the Hawks. The best winning percentage at this point in a season for the Heat came in the lockout-shortened season of 2011-12 when the team began 26-7 (78.8 winning percentage).
Lack of effort
Coach Erik Spoelstra on the Heats inconsistent defense through the first half of the season:
We have moments where we look like the Miami Heat, and where were able to do things a little better, and even differently, and then we have other times when we dont, Spoelstra said. Were giving up massive numbers against. We have to continue to commit, get better at what we do, and get better at some things we dont do so well.
The trend of defensive breakdowns continued Monday night as the Heat gave up 71 points in the first half to the Hawks. The Heat is also last in the league in rebounding, although they held a 20-19 advantage over Atlanta at halftime.
When asked about Greg Oden, Spoelstra wouldnt project ahead.
We wont get fast tracked on it, Spoelstra said. He has been making progress. It has all been a part of the plan. We will not put expectations on him right now, and we will not try to fast track. That is not what this is about.