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Wade likely to return next week as sixth man

Dwyane Wade will "probably" be the sixth man for the Miami Heat when he returns from his left shoulder injury, coach Pat Riley said Thursday, according to the Miami Herald.

Dwyane Wade Wade

Wade, who dislocated his shoulder and tore his labrum on Feb. 21, opted for rehab instead of surgery and is traveling with the team for the first time since being hurt. He practiced with the Heat for the fourth straight day on Thursday and is expected to resume playing next week.

Wade coming off the bench at first is "a good possibility to see how he's doing," Riley said Thursday, according to the Herald. "The starting thing doesn't shock the team, but it creates a bit of urgency with them. He could start. He could come off the bench. We'll just see how he feels."

Wade said he's not expecting to start when he finally returns.

"I don't want to do that anyway," Wade said Thursday, according to the Herald. "Me and [Riley] have an understanding my first game or so with how many minutes I'll play. It won't matter if I come off the bench or not."

"I just want to get into a flow a little bit so I can hit my stride when we get into the playoffs," he said.