Cavs playing LeBron, all starters after game off

April 13, 2015

CLEVELAND (AP) One day off was enough for LeBron James and the Cavaliers' other starters.

Coach David Blatt plans to play James, Kyrie Irving and Co. on Monday night against Detroit after resting four of his starters in Sunday's loss to the Celtics.

The Cavs were blown out 117-78 in Boston, with James, Irving, Kevin Love and J.R. Smith each taking the day off. Center Timofey Mozgov was the only starter to play.

Blatt said he's going to play his starters ''as close to a regular game as we can'' against the Pistons in the second-to-last game of the regular season for Cleveland, which clinched the No. 2 seed in the Eastern Conference playoffs last week.


Blatt has been balancing resting his players while keeping them sharp before the NBA playoffs, which open this weekend.

''We want to keep guys in rhythm,'' he said.

Blatt intends to give his regulars some playing time in Wednesday night's season finale at home against Washington, another playoff team. But Blatt said they probably won't get as many minutes as they will against the Pistons.

Blatt, who grew up in the Boston area, joked that getting thumped in front of friends and family members was difficult.

''It wasn't pleasant,'' he said. ''You never want to go back home and get your butt kicked. We did what we had to do for our team.''