It’s getting hard to keep up with all the injuries and illnesses. Every NBA team has to deal with them, but let’s consider just one, the Cleveland Cavaliers. Their star Kyrie Irving played (quite well) through a bout of food poisoning on Wednesday. Anderson Varejao has a sore knee, though we expect both in the lineup this evening. Rookie Dion Waiters has a deep thigh bruise, while fellow freshman Tyler Zeller, who has a fractured face, is being fitted for a mask. Let’s call them doubtful. C.J. Miles is also suffering from food poisoning — where do these guys eat? — and may not be able to go. That could mean a Daniel Gibson sighting.
Other teams are certainly not immune. Andrew Bogut has been shut down for 7-10 days in an effort to build strength in that troublesome ankle. J.J. Barea sprained his foot. That’s not even mentioning the many longer-term issues; there’s no word on when guys like Andrew Bynum and Ricky Rubio will return.
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November 8 Games
OKC @ CHI: It wasn’t until the fourth quarter that Kevin Durant took over, scoring 10 of his 24 points. The best Thunder player in the first half was Serge Ibaka, who finished with 21 PTS, 9 REB and 4 BLK.
A banged-up Russell Westbrook (shoulder) missed 15 shots but still double-doubled (16 PTS, 12 AST) while Kevin Martin chipped in 15 in 31 minutes. For the Bulls, Kirk Hinrich (12 PTS, 5 AST) is looking better, so Nate Robinson was quiet, and the rest of the second unit didn’t do enough. Luol Deng had 27 points and Richard Hamilton added 20 in the tough home loss.
LAC @ POR: The Trail Blazers came out flat, falling behind by 21 in the first half. Damian Lillard (16 PTS, 4 AST, 3 STL) held his own against Chris Paul (21 PTS, 6 AST, 3 STL) but C J.J. Hickson (5 PTS, 5 REB) was absolutely dominated by DeAndre Jordan (21 PTS, 8 REB) and the Portland bench couldn’t stop Jamal Crawford , who had 25 despite missing five of six attempts from deep. Nicolas Batum was a bright spot in the loss with 23 points, 9 rebounds and 5 assists, while rookie Meyers Leonard played fairly well off the bench.