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Heat star Jimmy Butler’s status vs. Clippers after ankle injury vs. Lakers

Jimmy Butler, Heat, Paul George, Clippers

Miami Heat star Jimmy Butler will not play against the Los Angeles Clippers on Thursday night after suffering a sprained right ankle against the Los Angeles Lakers on Wednesday night. It’s unclear if Butler will miss more time after this game.

Butler played the entire first quarter against the Lakers but didn’t return to play again. It looked like Miami was going to beat the LeBron James-less Lakers anyway, but Los Angeles went on a late charge in regulation and the game went to overtime. The Lakers then won the game in overtime, 120-117, though both teams did their best trying to blow it.

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The Heat have hit a bit of a rough patch after starting the season 6-1. They’ve lost three of their last four games and are in serious danger of dropping another thanks to Butler’s injury. This could have wound up being a schedule loss anyway even with Butler, but now coming up with a victory without him on the second night of a back-to-back after an overtime loss will be real tough. Butler has been playing at an MVP level to start this season.

Still, Miami does have a good amount of talent without Butler, especially with Tyler Herro in the midst of a breakout campaign. The Heat will need Herro, Kyle Lowry, Bam Adebayo and Duncan Robinson to really step up on Thursday night against Paul George and the Clippers.