Kyrie Irving’s shoulder injury against Toronto is expected to put him on the bench for 3-4 weeks with a left acromioclavicular sprain. ESPN’s coverage is here.
Mary Schmitt Boyer of the Plaindealer / Cleveland.com covers the press conference where Byron Scott is not concerned about Kyrie’s durability.
Ben Golliver of Sports Illustrated notes the silver lining to this moment of Déjà Vu.
If the season ended today, the Cavaliers would select fourth, but there are eight teams clustered between 20 and 23 wins. Something as simple as a three-game winning streak could drop them as far as ninth in the draft order. If Cleveland continues to win at its .286 pace without Irving, the team will go 5-14 down the stretch to finish with 26 wins. That would seem to be enough to help them hold on to the No. 4 position, if not even improve to the No. 3. Within the context of the team’s youth movement, ensuring a top-five lottery pick in June’s draft isn’t the worst consolation prize for a month of ugly basketball without their franchise guy.
Basically? I’d be shocked if we saw Kyrie Irving in a Cavaliers uniform again this season. Now I’m not one to question someone’s injuries. Lord knows I’ve been accused of falling down in a heap during a winter football game and screaming “my meniscus!!!” and then getting up and sprinting to the end zone three plays later. But the Cavs brass has to have been looking for an excuse to shut down their winning ways before they cost themselves a prime draft spot, and this is just the opportunity. Don’t be surprised if Dion Waiters develops a ruptured scowling muscle, Marreese Speights has to be put on season ending Demoxinil treatment, and the Cavs surreptitiously import the entire Canton Charge roster to finish out the season.
So while you’re firing up Photoshop to make me a nice picture of a one armed Kyrie Irving driving a Sherman tank, you can think of this summer. Nbadraft.net has a 2013 mock draft update cataloging the risers and sinkers in college basketball. Who might be there for the Cavs at 4-11 in June? At this point, it’s anyone’s guess.
And speaking of Waiters, James Herbert of SB Nation has a nice interview with him, here. Highlights include the Philly style, being a Momma’s boy, and advice from the Cavs veterans. Keep ballin’, Saint Weirdo, but don’t ball too well. You’ve got to steer this Abrams into the top bottom five.