Print and Go Back ESPN.com: NBA [Print without images]

Wednesday, January 4, 2012
Updated: January 5, 10:57 AM ET
LeBron James sprains ankle vs. Pacers

By Brian Windhorst
ESPN.com

MIAMI -- Already missing Dwyane Wade with a foot injury, the Heat had forward LeBron James sprain his left ankle during the third quarter of their 118-83 victory over the Indiana Pacers Wednesday night.

James was able to play another seven minutes after the injury but only because trainers knew whenever he stopped the ankle would swell. Having dealt with this same sort of injury numerous times in his career, James was unsure after the game of whether he'd be able to play Thursday night when the Heat play in Atlanta.

"It's always about the next day," said James, who had 33 points, 13 assists and eight rebounds as the Heat improved to 6-1. "It might swell a little on the plane, we'll see how I feel in the morning."

James has played with a sprained ankle several times before, only to end up missing the next game or two. Last season, James played through a sprain in Los Angeles and then couldn't play the next night after the ankle swelled on a flight to Denver.

Wade missed Wednesday's game against the Pacers after a week-old foot contusion flared up following a set of back-to-back games earlier in the week. Wade said after the game Wednesday that his foot feels better after two days of continuous treatment.

Both players are being considered questionable for Thursday's rematch against the Hawks, who handed Miami its only loss on Monday. James said he will not let Wade's status affect his decision on Thursday.

"It's all about being smart, D. Wade's injury can't determine what I do," James said. "If I feel like I can't help the team, I might sit out tomorrow."

Brian Windhorst covers the NBA for ESPN.com.