All-Star point guard won't be shut down for now, team says.
By SAM AMICO FS Ohio
Kyrie Irving's right knee is still bothering him, that much he admits. But he isn't about to let it keep him from playing. And if it's OK with the star point guard, it's OK with the
Irving missed three games last week with what the Cavs called a sore/hyperextended right knee, suffered in practice. A follow-up MRI on the knee confirmed it was nothing more serious.
So Irving returned to the lineup on Wednesday, and looked exactly like the Irving who NBA fans know and love — he scored 20 points and had 10 assists in a flurry of a finish to help the Cavs overtake Utah.
Irving looked great. The knee looked fine. But according to Kyrie, looks can be a little deceiving. The knee is still sore, he said. He will carry on anyway, he added.
"The only way I would get better is if I sit out for the rest of the season," he said. "I'm not doing that."
Of course, this whole issue took on a life of its own at practice Thursday. In a world of social media and a society that really seems to enjoy freaking out, that's really not a major surprise.
Anyway, Cavs coach Byron Scott said he might have to consider shutting down Irving for a while if the knee continues to be a problem — or if it gets to the point "where I know it's bothering him enough that he can't perform the way I know he is capable of."
But the Cavs have not reached that point with Irving. No one is getting shut down today. Clearly, he's still able to perform pretty doggone well, and the knee will continue to be treated and monitored.
"If there is any way of doing more damage by continuing to play, then I'll find that out and we'll go from there," Scott told reporters Thursday. "I want him to be able to go out there and play and be effective for us. I don't want him to be out there playing at 50 percent."
• Starting shooting guard
Dion Waiters returned to practice Thursday after missing the last two games with a stomach virus. Waiters is expected to play in Friday's home game vs. Memphis.
• Small forward
Omri Casspi also returned for the first time since an appendectomy in late February. He has seen action in just 29 of the Cavs' 61 games. Casspi and the Cavs were working on a buyout last week, but no deal was reached.