MIAMI (AP) - Miami Heat forward Chris Bosh was preparing to return for Game 3 of his team's Eastern Conference first-round series in New York on Thursday, hours after his wife gave birth to the couple's first child.
Bosh left the team shortly after it arrived in New York on Wednesday night, taking a private plane back to Miami after getting word that his wife was in labor. His son was born at 3 a.m., said Heat coach Erik Spoelstra.
"A great moment for their family," Spoelstra said, adding that Bosh's availability will be determined around game time Thursday night.
Bosh's wife posted a photo of him holding his newborn son to a social media account early Thursday. Hours earlier, Bosh said he did not expect that the birth to be imminent.
"From a Dream, To a Thought, To Reality, To being in our Arms," Adrienne Bosh posted on Twitter a few hours after giving birth.
Many of Bosh's teammates can relate to what he's going through, juggling family responsibility with the demands of the playoffs. Shane Battier's wife delivered a girl last season while Memphis - Battier's former team - was facing San Antonio in the postseason. Mike Miller's wife gave birth during last season's Heat playoff run, and LeBron James' now-fiancee Savannah Brinson delivered their second child during Cleveland's appearance in the 2007 finals.
James and Dwyane Wade said they expected Bosh to be back for the game.
"It can be physically draining because you don't get much sleep while you're going through that whole process," James said. "But as far as mentally draining, I think the best way to deal with it is make sure the family's OK, make sure his wife of course is OK, and this is a great way to get away from it, to come back here and play the game of basketball."
Bosh averaged 15 points and 5 rebounds in the first two games of the series, which Miami led 2-0 heading into Thursday night.