Last year P.J. Tucker played a role in eliminating the Miami Heat from the playoffs.
Now, he is preparing to help the Heat attempt a championship. Tucker, who was on the Milwaukee Bucks a year ago, is expected back in the lineup for the start of the postseason after being sidelined with a late-season calf injury.
Tucker did not practice Wednesday but told coach Erik Spoelstra he is ready to return.
«His message has been the same to what he just told me as [he] walked off the court,» Spoelstra. «He said, ‘I’ll be ready, and don’t think otherwise,’ with a few other expletives.”’
Tucker missed the final two regular games with the injury. His presence has been valuable this season because of his experience. He helped lead the Bucks past the Heat in last year’s first round and was a key cog in them winning the championship.
“It’s encouraging,” Spoelstra said. “You know, we were open to all the possibilities. He’s really been doing around-the-clock treatment.”
The Heat, who are the No. 1 seed in the Eastern Conference, will play either the Atlanta Hawks or Cleveland Cavaliers in the first round.