Dwyane Wade refused to make excuses, injury-related or otherwise, after he stunk up the joint in the Miami Heat's ugly Game 3 loss to the Indiana Pacers on Thursday night. But now an injury explanation has snuck out of the woodwork anyway -- sources tell ESPN's Michael Wallace that Wade had his knee drained on Wednesday before the loss.
Wade had one of the worst games of his career in Game 3 -- he went scoreless in the first half for the first time in 95 playoff games, and he finished with just five points on 2-of-13 shooting with five turnovers. He declined to comment on injuries playing a part in his struggles, despite the weeks of left knee soreness he's battled this season.
"If I'm in uniform, I'm ready to play," he snapped.
Wade returned in full force for Game 4, teaming with LeBron James to form an unstoppable one-two punch that destroyed the Pacers in the second half and evened their Eastern Conference semifinal series, 2-2. Wade started slow but scored 22 of his 30 points in the second half; he added nine rebounds, six assists and two blocks in 41 minutes. Wade and James scored 48 of Miami's 50 points over one stretch.
"The last two days have been mental," Wade said of his recovery. "It was great for me just getting away and to get that energy that I needed. I know I was struggling on the offensive end, but I didn't want that to affect my overall game."