By TIM REYNOLDS
AP Basketball Writer
MIAMI (AP) – Chris Bosh’s latest blood-clot scare is over. His quest to rejoin the Miami Heat playoff push is not.
Bosh released a statement Thursday announcing he does not currently have deep vein thrombosis – or blood clots in his leg – and that he remains hopeful of getting back on the court with the Heat at some point this season.
Bosh did not offer any potential timetables for his return. It’s the first time he has said anything remotely specific about his status since Feb. 13, the day after he withdrew from the All-Star Game with what was described as a strained left calf.
"I know there have been many questions regarding my health and when I will play again," Bosh said. "My situation this year has never been life threatening. I am feeling great and currently I do not have deep vein thrombosis."
Bosh’s statement did not say if he was still on blood thinners. A person with knowledge of the situation told The Associated Press last month that Bosh had started taking them to combat this clot, which was described as relatively small. The clot found last month was not in any way as severe as the situation Bosh faced last year, when a clot traveled from his calf to his lung and led to him dealing with severe pain and being hospitalized for several days.
"Together with the Miami Heat, I am working with doctors, exploring the best precautionary treatment options and taking every necessary step to make sure I am healthy for myself, my family and my team," Bosh said. "I have been working out, training with the team, watching film of the games, walking through plays, and have attended home games despite not being visible to the public."
Bosh has given some hints about his condition through tweets in recent days, saying he’s "feeling good! feeling great!" on Saturday and an image of two pairs of sneakers on Wednesday with the caption "another day at the office in the books."
Miami is 8-3 since the All-Star break, the fourth-best record in the NBA over that span, all without Bosh. The Heat have been playing faster in Bosh’s absence, and added Joe Johnson late last month – immediately putting him in the starting lineup at small forward, after shifting Luol Deng from that spot to one where he starts in Bosh’s position, power forward.
"You can’t replace Chris," Heat guard Dwyane Wade said earlier this week. "And we’re not trying to replace Chris."
The Heat play in Chicago on Friday. They were off on Thursday, with no practice or availability scheduled.
If Bosh is deemed to be susceptible to blood clots – a test he took last year suggested that he was not – it could obviously be a career-threatening issue. Clots are often treated with bloodthinning medications, and athletes who are involved with contact sports are typically advised to avoid using such medication because of the heightened chance of bleeding.
However, Bosh is still planning on being back. He was selected to his 11th All-Star team this year, and was averaging 19.1 points per game before being sidelined.
"I will continue to support my teammates in every way possible," Bosh said. "I remain positive that I will be able to return this season. I truly appreciate everyone’s concern and support."
Bosh signed a five-year, $118 million deal in the summer of 2014. He’s slotted to make nearly $76 million over the next three seasons.
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