Chris Bosh’s blood clots kept him out for the stretch run of last season, including the Heat’s postseason run. And there are ever increasing odds that he could miss a part if not most of the upcoming season due to the same issue. With that, the Heat are likely going to look for salary cap relief in the case that he cannot play, but Bosh is intent on making the Heat’s life as difficult as possible in that regard.
Amid the silence from the team, Bosh wants to make it known that he’s going to try and play. There’s no news as to whether Bosh will even be cleared to play or not, and the player himself doesn’t know for sure, but the team is fighting any appearance that they’re trying to keep him out for salary cap reasons.
And here’s the problem: Though the Heat can apply to remove Bosh’s future salaries ($25.3 million in 2017-18, $26.8 million in 2018-19) from its cap as early as Feb. 9 (a full calendar year since his last game), the odds are against Miami being granted that relief if Bosh fights this.
The reason: To clear Bosh off the cap, the labor agreement says “a doctor that is jointly selected by the league and players association” must agree his condition “is career-ending, or severe enough to put him at risk if he continues playing.”
Bosh disputes any notion that he cannot play and –– barring another blood clot –– he, in tandem with the players association, likely will oppose use of any doctors who say he cannot play and presumably will try to find a doctor who will say he can. And the process might not even get to that point.
On Wednesday, the Heat faced a deadline as to whether to use the stretch provision which would allow the team to cut Bosh and spread his $76 million cap hit over the next seven seasons, but the team has not done that and doesn’t look like it will do so.
With the differences in medical science as to how serious Bosh’s blood clots are, and his insistence that he’s going to play next season, it puts both him and the team, still smarting from the hardball they played with Dwyane Wade, in a bad position.
This isn’t going away anytime soon.