Heat big man Kelly Olynyk limped to the locker room after slipping and falling to the court in the third quarter of Canada’s win over Nigeria on Wednesday in a FIBA exhibition game.
Olynyk, a member of Canada’s national team preparing for the FIBA World Cup, crashed to the court while dribbling the ball and came up hobbled, looking to be favoring his right leg. But it was only a scare, with the diagnosis coming back Thursday as a bruised knee following an X-ray that returned negative.
Olynyk will take a week off before continuing his preparation for next month’s FIBA World Cup. That’s positive news for Olynyk, the Heat and Canada’s men’s basketball team.
Before exiting Wednesday’s game, Olynyk recorded 11 points in 16 minutes.
Olynyk, 28, is entering the third season of a four-year, $50 million free agent deal he signed with the Heat in the summer of 2017. He’s due $13.1 million this upcoming season and holds a $13.6 million player option for 2020-21.
Olynyk averaged 10 points on 46.3 percent shooting from the field and 35.4 percent shooting on threes, 4.7 rebounds and 1.8 assists in 79 games (36 starts) for Miami last season. In his first two seasons with the Heat, he posted a team-best plus-minus of plus-339.
It wouldn’t be a surprise if Olynyk began this upcoming season as the Heat’s starting power forward, considering his success playing alongside center Bam Adebayo. The Adebayo-Olynyk duo is a plus-210 during the past two seasons.
Olynyk isn’t the only Heat player preparing for the FIBA World Cup. Adebayo is in Las Vegas this week participating in Team USA’s training camp in preparation for the tournament held in China.
The Heat opens training camp in late September and begins the preseason at home against the Spurs on Oct. 8.