Chris Bosh unlikely to play for Heat again, Pat Riley says

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Monday, September 26, 2016

Heat president Pat Riley says he believes that Chris Bosh has played his final game for Miami, with the All-Star forward's latest health setback apparently convincing the team that a return from multiple bouts of blood clots is no longer feasible.

Riley told reporters Monday that Bosh's "Heat career is probably over" and that the team is not actively working toward his return.

"There is not a next step for us," Riley said. "It's pretty definitive for us in our position."

As to whether Bosh's NBA career is over, Riley told reporters, "That's up to him."

The Heat said Friday that Bosh would not be allowed to participate in their preseason training camp after failing a physical. The Heat declined to explain why Bosh failed the physical and cited a clause in the collective bargaining agreement that prohibits the team from releasing certain medical information.

Speaking in a videotaped segment published online Friday, Bosh called the failed physical "a down moment right now" while pledging that everything would work out.

"Just because the journey has ups and downs doesn't mean I will stop sharing with you guys," Bosh said. "So I will just continue to share despite what's going on."

Bosh, 32, faced the first of two bouts with blood clots in February 2015. One that was believed to have formed in one of his legs traveled to a lung and caused problems so severe that he needed to be hospitalized for several days. He recovered and was averaging 19.1 points per game last season when the second bout with clots began in February -- though the ones discovered then did not cause health issues anywhere near as serious as what he dealt with in 2015.

"Everybody knows how much CB means to me and his family," Heat coach Erik Spoelstra said Monday. "I love CB dearly. It was tough to watch CB and his family go through this the last couple years. Your heart just goes out to him."

In statements released in recent days, Bosh said he is ready to play and was written off by the team when the second bout with clots began. Riley strongly denied that assessment, saying the team worked to clear Bosh.

"We headed down the road very excited to a point where we thought it would work," Riley said. "And then the physical couldn't clear him to the next step."

The Heat were flying to the Bahamas on Monday for Tuesday's start of training camp. Riley said Bosh will not be on that trip.

Bosh is Miami's highest-paid player, set to earn about $76 million over the next three seasons. His money is guaranteed, though the Heat can get salary-cap relief in February from the bulk of that money if Bosh doesn't return to the court.

"We never, ever thought about that," Riley said. "If we didn't care about Chris, we would have played him in the playoffs."

With Bosh out of the mix, that means 11 of the 19 players who got minutes for the Heat last season are no longer with the team. Of the starters from Miami's last game -- Game 7 of the Eastern Conference semifinals in Toronto -- only Goran Dragic and Justise Winslow remain, with Dwyane Wade, Luol Deng and Joe Johnson all signing elsewhere this summer.

"We're rebuilding," Riley said. "But we're rebuilding to win now, and that's always been our attitude."

After seven seasons with the Raptors, Bosh signed with the Heat before the 2010-11 season. He, Wade andLeBron James formed the Heat's Big Three that went on to make four NBA Finals and win two titles.

Bosh, an 11-time All-Star, has averaged 19.1 points and 7.4 rebounds in his career.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.