Injuries happen and are apart of the game, but for the Cleveland Cavaliers, the amount of injuries this team has suffered thus far this season is just ridiculous. After getting off to a 3-0 start, Cleveland(5-7) has now lost seven out of their last nine and three straight after getting routed by the Jazz at home 117-87 on Tuesday night.
The Cavaliers were without eight players, including Andre Drummond, who played in every game this season before missing Tuesday’s action with an Achilles contusion.
In addition, they were without their starting backcourt, and maybe their two best scorers in Collin Sexton and Darius Garland, along with the league’s top rebounder in Drummond. So, without those guys, defeating the Jazz was going to be tough. Despite the loss, Cavs head coach J.B. Bickerstaff was happy with his team’s efforts.
“The group that we had out there gave us what they had,” Bickerstaff said after the game. “They had to play a ton of minutes; they had to play out of position, and they fought and gave us what they had. They played the game the right way with one another, and we just struggled, obviously, offensively with so much missing.”
Cleveland is growing as a team, and not many expected them to make a lot of noise this season. However, the players on the floor now for this team make it difficult for the Cavs to win games, but despite the injuries, Bickerstaff is pleased with his young Cavaliers’ mindset.
“Obviously, we all deal with the fact of the disappointment that our teammates are hurt,” he said. “I think that’s first and foremost. But, there is an acceptance of the reality and the idea of trying to do what’s best no matter what. So, there is a bought-in group; they’re a positive group. Nobody is down in the dumps or hanging their head.
“They’re trying to go out, do the right thing and compete and play the game the right way, and they’re still bought into that. It is difficult when you see human beings getting injured. Obviously, human nature makes you feel that kind of way. Our guys are sticking together, lifting each other up, and we’re trying to get the job done.”
Cleveland has to find a way to work through this rough patch and hope they can get healthy sooner than later. If not, a once-promising season at the start could turn into a struggle due to injuries.