Kevin Love returned to the Cleveland Cavaliers’ lineup on Thursday, but the star was LeBron James. The Cavaliers were outrebounded 52-38 in Sunday’s loss to Houston.
Each player was paired with a teammate, and the two would try to complete the challenge as fast as they could.
Back from a 13-game absence due to a knee injury, Love showed some rust but flirted with a double-double with 10 points and nine rebounds in 20 minutes.
Love underwent an arthroscopic procedure to remove a loose body from his knee February 14. Cavaliers coach Tyronn Lue said Shumpert, who has been starting at shooting guard for almost three months, is listed as day-to-day.
General manager David Griffin said Tuesday he anticipated Love would return on the team’s road trip that begins Saturday. Lue said Smith will return to the starting lineup when the team is back to full strength. Kyrie Irving never came into the game in the final quarter, exiting with knee tightness. Kyrie Irving added 26 points. Small forward Kyle Korver (left foot soreness) was the team’s only injured inactive.
“We just didn’t make shots”, Hayward said.
Against the Clippers, the Cavaliers have enjoyed much success recently.
Currently, the Cavaliers (44-22) hold a two-game advantage over the Boston Celtics for the top spot in the Eastern Conference.
887 – The Cavaliers made nine three-pointers against the Jazz, bringing their season total to 887.
Love is in the midst of his best season in Cleveland, averaging 20 points and 11.1 rebounds before the injury. Blake Griffin and DeAndre Jordan missed the game because coach Doc Rivers chose to rest them. With the loss, Los Angeles dropped to 40-29 on the season which is now good for fifth place in the Western Conference standings.
“I just don’t like how we lost”, he said. “He took over the game when we were right there in the fourth”.
“You go to a place where you’re like, ‘Do I love basketball?'” Frye said. “It’s the hardest month I’ve seen”. “So we don’t know exactly what we’ve got. It is what it is”.