Currently, the Cavaliers (44-22) hold a two-game advantage over the Boston Celtics for the top spot in the Eastern Conference.
A few days ago, Cleveland Cavaliers general manager David Griffin told reporters he hoped Kevin Love would return from his knee injury next week.
Kyrie Irving had 21 points before sitting out the fourth quarter due to tightness in his left knee. Such is life this season for the Cavaliers.
Love will be on an undisclosed minutes restriction, according to Lue.
After the game, LeBron said he didn’t do anything special. Thankfully, they were up to the task. He accounted for six turnovers as well, but the Cavs were able to survive them.
Although Love is mentally ready to get back on the floor and could make his return as soon as this weekend, he will not be forcing up any shots in order to get back into game shape.
“But he does present a lot of challenges because he’s a great player and a tough matchup”.
The former Jazz to Cleveland movement began with Jefferson, however.
For the second time this month, the Cavaliers embark on a road trip. It wasn’t so much strategic, it was really more necessity.
Iman Shumpert left the game with 4min 30sec remaining in the third quarter with a left arm injury and did not return. And this lineup responded. Irving scored 28 points. With 887, this year’s team has now already set a new franchise mark.
Russell Westbrook picked up his 33rd triple-double of the season as Oklahoma City won its third straight game.
Either way, Love is surely glad to be back.
Cleveland went just 7-6 in the 13 games Love missed. I think he’s averaging 26 (points), nine (assists), and eight (rebounds).
“His defensive rebounding, for one”, Lue said when asked what the Cavaliers missed the most while Love was out. “That’s good for us being back two weeks early”.
As Cleveland makes a run for a second consecutive National Basketball Association championship, the Cavaliers have stocked up on former Jazz players in the last few months.
James, 32, who has notched four triple-doubles in March alone, brought up his latest with 16 points, 11 rebounds and 12 assists before sitting out the fourth quarter.
Korver missed his fifth consecutive game, but continues to be listed as day-to-day and is taking part in light shooting exercises. “We haven’t been whole all year”, James said. That being said, the result obviously left the team with very little to celebrate in the locker room. “So we would go four rounds, basically four quarters, and we’d have teams of guys together, and we would just go 500 feet, 300 feet, 200 feet, etc. on the VersaClimber”.
Tobias Harris led Detroit with 17 points.
The important thing to keep in mind for Sunday’s game obviously is that Cleveland will be playing on back-to-back nights. The Cavaliers then play the Los Angeles Lakers, the Denver Nuggets, and the Charlotte Hornets. That hasn’t happened yet this season, really.
Step one of that process was getting Kevin Love back.