Even with knee issue, Wade solid for Heat
by Jeff Zillgitt, USA TODAY Sports
MIAMI – Everyone knows Miami Heat guard Dwyane Wade’s bruised right knee is bothering him.
Everyone knows his playoff scoring average (12.3 points) is nearly nine points lower than his 2012-13 regular-season average (21.2).
But Miami coach Erik Spoelstra wants everyone to look beyond the sore knee and the diminished scoring and understand Wade is helping the Heat win games.
“One of these days boxscores will have your plus-minus impact and maybe eventually people will start to look at a boxscore differently and eventually a new generation of fans, the media, staff will see that’s the most important one and he’s having that impact,” Spoelstra said.
Wade scored six points, his fourth-lowest playoff output in 117 playoff games, in Miami’s 88-65 Game 4 victory vs. the Chicago Bulls on Monday. He had no points in the first half, and though he finished with 10 points in Friday’s Game 3, he had just two points in the first half and took just one shot.
But Spoelstra has a point. Let’s take a look at the plus-minus statistic, a measure of points for and points against a team while a player is on the court.
In the seven playoff games – Wade missed Game 4 against the Milwaukee Bucks due to the knee – Wade is plus-78, including plus-50 in four games against the Bulls. That’s the highest plus-minus for any Heat player, LeBron James included, against Chicago.
Let’s take another look at another increasingly important statistic – points scored and points allowed per 100 possessions for a team while a player is on the floor. With Wade on the floor in the playoffs, Miami scores 109.5 points per 100 possessions and allows 94.9 points per 100 possessions. With Wade on the bench, Miami scores 109.4 points per 100 possessions and allows 89.9 points per 100 possessions, according to NBA.com/stats.
Those numbers are even more pronounced against the Bulls: 110.6 points scored per 100 and 103.4 points allowed per 100 with Wade on the bench and 110.2 points scored per 100 and 86.9 points allowed per 100 with Wade on the floor.
Even with Wade’s bruised knee, Miami is a better … [For more on Even with knee issue, Dwyane Wade solid for Miami Heat, click here.]