LeBron James misses practice

MIAMI -- LeBron James sat out the Miami Heat's practice Thursday with what he calls a deep right shin bruise. But coach Erik Spoelstra plans to start James on Friday night when the Heat take on the undefeated New Orleans Hornets.

James suffered the injury last Sunday in the Heat's victory at New Jersey. He played through the injury Tuesday when he put up 20 points and 12 assists against the Minnesota Timberwolves. But he stayed mostly on the perimeter and had his first game with no rebounds since his rookie season.

"Right now every time you kind of flex your foot, it kind of flares up," James said. "We're doing everything possible to get it back to 100 percent."

Spoelstra isn't terming James' situation an injury and said the plan was to rest him so James could play in back-to-back games over the weekend. The Heat, who are on a four-game winning streak, host the Nets on Saturday night.

Brian Windhorst covers the Heat for ESPN.com.