Posts Tagged ‘Plain Dealer’

Report: Biceps injury could sack season for Irving

By Sekou Smith, NBA.com




VIDEO: Kyrie Irving suffers a biceps injury in last night’s loss to the Clippers

HANG TIME HEADQUARTERS — All-Star point guard Kyrie Irving might have played his last game this season.

The Cleveland Cavaliers’ star suffered a biceps injury on his left arm late in the first quarter of a loss to the Los Angeles Clippers Sunday night and could be done for the season, according to Mary Schmitt Boyer of the Plain Dealer.

More will be known after Irving is examined today, but the fear is that he could have yet another season curtailed by injury. And Irving has a peculiar injury history that seems to impact him season after season. If he gets sacked again this season, that might be the end of the Cavaliers’ last-ditch effort to make a play for the eighth and final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference chase.

Irving’s future, however, isn’t in question. The MVP of the All-Star Game last month in New Orleans, over leading MVP candidates Kevin Durant and LeBron James, the Cavs have surely seen enough from Irving to know that he’s a building block for years to come. That said, his injury history is hard to ignore. More from the Plain Dealer:

Irving, the Cavs All-Star point guard, left the game with a left biceps injury late in the first quarter, and he left the arena with his left arm in a sling. He is scheduled to have an MRI on Monday in Cleveland, but two NBA sources indicated the injury could be severe enough to end his season in the worst case scenario.

That would be a blow to the Cavs, 26-41, clinging to their fading playoff hopes in spite of being 4.5 games behind eighth-seeded Atlanta with 15 games left, as well as to Irving, who worked extremely hard last summer in order to prevent the sorts of freak injuries that have plagued him throughout his career.

He has missed just three games this year with a left knee contusion, and even played through a broken nose suffered when he was elbowed by the Timberwolves’ Corey Brewer at Minnesota on Nov. 13.

Unfortunately for him, that wasn’t the case in his first three seasons. Last year, he missed 11 games with a fractured left index finger, three with a hyperextended right knee and a total of nine after suffering a sprained left AC joint. He played through a broken bone in his jaw that was protected by a mask. Before last season, he broke his hand when he slapped a padded wall in frustration during a summer-league practice.

His rookie season, he missed 13 games with a concussion and a shoulder injury. His one season at Duke was limited to 11 games because of a toe injury.

This is setting up as a potentially huge free agent summer for the Cavaliers, depending on which players make themselves available. James and Carmelo Anthony could headline a bumper crop. The Cavaliers have assets and cap space to work. Having a healthy Irving coming off of his best season as a pro would make the Cleveland an even more appealing destination.

So the results of Irving’s evaluation today could very well have long-lasting ramifications for not only the young point guard but also the entire organization.


VIDEO: Kyrie Irving’s banner season included his first triple-double last month

LeBron, The Future And … Cleveland?





HANG TIME HEADQUARTERS – NBA players remind me of political candidates during election season. They go from city to city, facing a media throng eager to pepper them with questions that usually result in answers that barely raise an eyebrow they’ve been given so many times.

Every now and then, though, you get something totally bizarre. And that’s exactly what the reporters covering the Miami Heat practice in Cleveland today got when they assembled to interview LeBron James after practice.

You have to wonder how these comments (courtesy of the Twitter feeds of both Tom Reed and Mary Schmitt Boyer of the Plain Dealer and Brian Windhorst of ESPN.com) will go over with the faithful in both Cleveland and Miami? …

He’s happy in Miami, but: “I think it would be great, it would be fun to play in front of these fans again.”

On one day coming back to Cleveland: “You can’t predict future…If I decide to come back hopefully the fans will accept me.”

About Cavs’ owner Dan Gilbert: “He said what he said out of anger. He probably would want to take that back but I made a mistake too.”

Again, the context in which these comments were made needs to be restated. James and the Heat are in Northeast Ohio and will have been for three days before Friday night’s game against the Cavaliers.

So if there is a little nostalgia floating in the air, we understand.

But talking like this so soon into his tenure in Miami, and so soon after the messy divorce  he went through with the Cavs’ faithful, is bound to strike a chord with some folks!

The bigger surprise is that James has actually entertained the idea of returning to his roots someday during his playing career. That alone is reason for pause … anyway, back to Linsanity!

Hang Time Podcast (Draft Special)

HANG TIME HEADQUARTERS – With The Finals in the rear view, it’s time to turn all of our attention to Thursday night’s Draft.

The names change from year to year, but the circumstances remain the same. Some lucky team (Cleveland is the big winner this time around) is hoping to find the player(s) that can deliver them from the necessary evil that is the Lottery.

Kyrie Irving, Derrick Williams, Brandon Knight and Enes Kanter have all been mentioned possibilities for the Cavaliers for one of their two top four picks (No. 1 and No. 4) in this Draft. And that’s if the Cavaliers don’t decide to move one of those picks for more assets and the ability to move down the Draft order and still get what they need with two chances to strike it rich.

With so much on the line, we had to stack the lineup for the The Hang Time Podcast Draft Special. NBA.com’s college basketball guru Chris Dortch, editor of the Blue Ribbon College Basketball Yearbook, breaks down the players. Longtime Cavaliers writer Mary Schmitt Boyer of the Plain Dealer sets the scene for us in Cleveland. And HT’s West Coast bureau chief and NBA.com’s draft specialist Scott Howard Cooper helps us make sense of it all, both the domestic and international draft scene, after his trip to Italy for the adidas Eurocamp.

LISTEN HERE:

As always, we welcome your feedback. You can follow the entire crew, including the Hang Time Podcast, co-hosts Lang Whitaker of SLAM Magazine and Sekou Smith of NBA.com, as well as our super producer Micah Hart of NBA.com’s All Ball Blog.

– To download the podcast, click here. To subscribe via iTunes, click here, or get the xml feed if you want to subscribe some other, less iTunes-y way.

LeBron Returns Home Minus Hype

HANG TIME HEADQUARTERS – The numbers alone say it all.

Since that wild and emotional Dec. 2 Heat-Cavaliers game at Quicken Loans Arena, the Cavs have gone 7-48 while the Heat have gone 41-14.

It was unclear at the time which team would use that night as a springboard and which team would not recover from the moment. We know now, of course. And that’s what takes some of the pop out of tonight’s game, which marks the second time LeBron James will head home to Northeast Ohio (yes, we know he’s from Akron and not Cleveland, but spare us the geography lesson).

“Can’t get no worse than it was December 2nd,” James told reporters before he and the Heat arrived in Cleveland Monday evening. “I know that for a fact.”

On that we can all agree.

One other thing that is certain, the in-game banter between James and his old teammates will not take place again, at least not in the same manner.

“If he comes down to the bench and wants to chat, that ain’t going to happen,” said Cavaliers guard Boobie Gibson. “We can rule that out.”

Fine, there won’t be any chest bumping or warm embraces to worry about. With only three players on the Cavs’ active roster — Gibson, Anthony Parker and J.J. Hickson — that actually played with James when he was in Cleveland, that hypothetical love-fest wouldn’t have lasted long anyway.

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