MIAMI (AP) — Dwyane Wade sat out Miami's game against the Atlanta Hawks on Tuesday night, the second time this season that the Heat guard has been held out for rest purposes.
Wade said Heat coach Erik Spoelstra made the decision, after consulting with the team's training staff. Wade and Spoelstra have both said they will be in regular communication about his status, mindful of what he's gone through with his knees in recent seasons.
"It's a slow climb," Wade said.
Wade also missed the second game of the season in Philadelphia, which was the second game of a back-to-back. Wade missed six of his seven shots and scored only four points on the second night of a back-to-back at Charlotte on Saturday.
Tuesday's game started another two-game, two-night swing for Miami. Wade will be with the Heat in Orlando for their game Wednesday night, though said no decision has been made about his availability.
Wade is averaging 16.7 points this season for Miami.
"Still big picture," Spoelstra said. "We want to be proactive."
Wade said he's not a "percentage guy" as far as gauging where he's at physically, then said he feels like he's around 75 percent on good days now.
"Just trying to get consistent as much as possible and as time goes on, hopefully the treatment I got this summer will start to take over a little bit more and some of the discomfort I have will go away a little more," Wade said.
James Jones started for Wade. It was Jones' first start since April 22, 2012, and just the 26th in 248 appearances with the Heat. It also marked the sixth different starting lineup Miami has used in 11 games this season.
"We don't ever want it to seem usual," Heat star and four-time NBA MVP LeBron James said. "We want guys in the lineup but health is number one for our team, for sure. Like I continue to state, the best thing about it is when guys go down we've got depth and guys who can step in and play a starting role."
Atlanta was without forward Paul Millsap, who was not with the team in Miami because of right elbow tendinitis. Gustavo Ayon started in his place, the second time that's happened this season for the Hawks.