The Cavaliers are one of the darlings of the first week of the NBA season, but the team took a big hit on Tuesday morning when Cleveland announced Kevin Love will hit the sidelines after re-aggravating his strained right calf.
The team said Love will be re-evaluated in three to four weeks, serving a blow to Cleveland. The initial strain occurred during the preseason, according to a press release from the team.
In two games as a starter this season, Love had been out of sorts, shooting just 33 percent from the field, but his absence nevertheless makes an already young Cavaliers team even thinner and takes some valuable shooting out of the starting lineup.
The Cavs charged out to a 3-0 start including a top-ten offense and defense over the first week of the season, becoming one of the most surprising teams in the league in the process. They will likely rely more on second-year stretch forward Dylan Windler as a replacement as well as veterans Cedi Osman and Larry Nance Jr., with Osman potentially sliding back into the starting lineup to replace Love.
Love has three years and about $91 million left on his contract and has been in perpetual trade rumors as the Cavs pivot to their young core, but his impact on bringing those young players has been big and they’ll miss him as he recovers for the next month.