Thursday, May 26, 2011

Mike Miller playing through week-old daughter’s illness

Mike Miller was a big part of the Miami Heat’s Game 4 win against the Chicago Bulls Tuesday night, scoring 12 points—nine in the fourth quarter on 4-for-4 shooting—and grabbing nine rebounds off the bench. He did that despite dealing with a ruptured tendon in his left thumb. But what makes the performance even more remarkable is that he has the health of his week-old daughter on his mind.

Mike Miller went to see his daughter in the hospital after Game 4. (AP Photo)

Miller’s daughter, Jaelyn, is intensive care with an unspecified complication and has been in the hospital since she was born. Her condition may require surgery, according to the Miami Herald.

Miller traveled to Chicago with his team for tonight’s Game 5.

Miller said he went to see Jaelyn in the hospital after Tuesday night’s game and that he stayed with her until 4:00 a.m. He also wore pink shoelaces in her honor during Game 4, and Heat president Pat Riley said he would foot the bill if the NBA fined Miller for a uniform violation, the Herald reported.

“As important as the playoffs or the Eastern Conference finals are to me, the most important thing right now is her and my wife,” Miller said. “This kind of puts my thumb injuries in perspective.”

Heat coach Erik Spoelstra has told Miller to take as much time away from the team as he needs to be with his family. Miller missed last Friday's practice but has since split time between his team and family, reported.

"We're here to support him through this," Spoelstra said. "He knows we're his family, too."

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