The smile is back — the full one that is.
Goran Dragic wasted no time getting his chipped front tooth repaired.
After catching an elbow to his mouth from Al Horford in Monday night’s win in Atlanta, the Heat’s starting point guard visited his dentist in Miami on Thursday and had a filler put in.
“No more Jim Carrey,” Dragic joked after Friday morning’s shootaround after being teased for days by teammates who compared him to Carrey’s character in Dumb and Dumber. “They just put a crown over it. I was there for two hours. I still need to go back on Monday.”
Dragic said he has no plans to wear a mouth guard.
“[Heat trainor] Jay [Sabol] is trying to convince me to do it, but I already tried it a couple times and it didn’t work for me,” Dragic said. “He said, ‘OK, we’re still trying to figure something out and try to make something work.’ We’ll see if I can [wear it].”
Coach Erik Spoelstra apparently didn’t notice Dragic’s new smile at practice Friday. But Dragic’s teammates did. Dwyane Wade was somewhat disappointed.
“I liked the Jim Carrey look,” said Wade, whose mouth too is better after his own oral dilemma versus the Nets on Wednesday. “I don’t know if his wife liked it. But I liked it on him. It was funny. Every time he smiled, you got a laugh out of it.”
Tyler Johnson, who had a front, bottom tooth knocked out and his jaw broken duringa summer league game, said he’s looking to get a temporary fill-in for his missing tooth soon. But he was a bit stunned at how quickly Dragic got his smile fixed.
Johnson said he has had a couple teeth knocked out over the years and said he actually got used to playing without one during college. Like Dragic, Johnson said he has never liked playing with a mouth guard.
“For me, I don’t feel like I can breathe good enough,” Johnson said. “Then talking is kind of hard too. CB [Chris Bosh] has it mastered. For me, it’s just hard to talk.”
Johnson also likes to chew gum while he’s playing.
Wade said Johnson looks good with a missing tooth. “It kind of goes [well] with Tyler,” Wade said.
McROBERTS, JOHNSON SIT
Johnson, who played the first half Wednesday night against the Nets after missing three games with a left shoulder injury, was out again Friday against the Raptors. So, too, was forward Josh McRoberts, who missed his fifth straight game with a bruised right knee.
“They’re both getting better,” Spoelstra said. “Tyler was sore in the second half [versus the Nets]. If I left it up to him he would have played in the second half. But we want him to play pain-free. So, we will continue to do rehab and treatment with him, evaluate him [Saturday].
“Josh is definitely getting better. He’s getting stronger. It was a bone bruise from the Lakers game [Nov. 10]. He just kept playing through it. So at least we knew what it was. And, we’ll just keep on getting him better.”
Johnson said it was probably a little premature on his part to return as quickly as he did.
“I just want to be out there with my team,” he said. “The trainers warned me about what could happen. I didn’t really set it back, which is good. But it just wasn’t ready. We kind of tapered back a little bit.
“They said if I stayed with my rehab process and I do it throughout the whole year there’s a chance I don’t even need to have surgery [at the end of the season]. But that’s going to be up to me to dedicate a lot of hours into correcting the problem with my shoulder. I can get better. Coming up in these next couple days I can get better, well enough to play. It’s going to be up to me and how hard the rehab process is.”