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Goran Dragic ready to return, expects minutes restriction

Heat, Goran Dragic

Miami Heat point guard Goran Dragic is ready to return from his eight game absence tonight according to Ira Winderman of the South Florida Sun-Sentinel and will face his former team, the Phoenix Suns. The one-time All-Star expects to play in a minutes’ restriction, given how the Heat have handled the slew of injuries thus far.

Dragic noted he’s not completely healthy yet but he’s certainly healthy enough to get back on the court and help his team climb out of a 9-14 start to the regular season.

“It’s better now,” said Dragic of his injured knee, noting that his injury kept him from achieving a full range of motion. “When the knee sprawls out, you have a limited range of motion and you cannot move well. That was my biggest concern, trying to get it sprawling out. I was doing treatment a lot and during the last two practices the knee reacted well, so the range of motion is back.”

Dragic memorably came back after a two-game absence earlier in the season after facing an issue with his bothersome knee, only to record a scoreless game upon his return, going 0-for-7 from the field before continuing to play the next three games.

The 32-year-old urged this time, the situation is different, no longer rushing his return to the court.

“I was out for eight games, so I did everything that was in my power and took the time,” said Dragic. “That [scoreless] game, I didn’t have the opportunity to practice and now I’ve practice three or four times with the team, so that makes a difference.”

Besides Dragic, the Heat recently got back guard Tyler Johnson from a hamstring strain but will be without starting center Hassan Whiteside, who has been away from the team due to the birth of his first child.