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Kyrie Irving leaves early with calf tightness in Cavs' 96-91 loss to Wizards in preseason finale

By Jason Lloyd Published: October 18, 2016

COLUMBUS: LeBron James scored 18 points and Tristan Thompson had 14 points and 10 rebounds in the Cavaliers’ 96-91 loss to the Washington Wizards Tuesday at Ohio State in the final preseason tune-up. The Cavs will have a week off prior to the season opener Tuesday against the New York Knicks.

Kyrie Irving left in the second quarter with left calf tightness and did not return, although the injury isn’t considered serious. Coach Tyronn Lue held him out for precautionary reasons.

J.R. Smith started at shooting guard in his first appearance since signing a four-year contract, although he played just 12 minutes and scored four points, including one 3-pointer. Smith will spend the last week of preseason getting his legs back.

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Kyrie Irving leaves preseason game with calf tightness, will not return

By Jason Lloyd Published: October 18, 2016

COLUMBUS: Kyrie Irving left Tuesday’s preseason game against the Washington Wizards with left calf tightness and will not return, according to the team.

Irving left for good with 8:22 left in the second quarter. He was scoreless in 10 minutes Tuesday and finishes the preseason playing in three games. Coach Ty Lue is treating Tuesday’s preseason game at Ohio State as a dress rehearsal for the regular season, but now he’s doing it without his point guard.

Irving’s injury isn’t considered serious, they’re just being cautious with him since Tuesday marked the preseason finale. The Cavs open the regular season next Tuesday at home against the New York Knicks.

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J.R. Smith happy to be back with NBA championship teammates, plans to buy house in Ohio

By Michael Beaven Published: October 16, 2016

INDEPENDENCE: Cavaliers shooting guard J.R. Smith walked around Cleveland Clinic Courts a happy man on Sunday.

The 3-point sharp-shooter joked with teammates, hugged Cavs staff members and addressed the media about returning to play for the defending NBA champions.

“It feels great,” Smith said of being back with a reported four-year contract worth $57 million. “I didn’t take my physical yet, so I can’t practice, but it feels good to be in the gym, be around the guys and to be a part of it.”

Smith said he plans to practice Monday, which makes forward LeBron James happy.

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J.R. Smith ready to help Cavaliers attempt to repeat as NBA champions

By Michael Beaven Published: October 16, 2016

INDEPENDENCE: Shooting guard J.R. Smith has a new contract and is pumped about the Cavaliers chances to repeat as NBA champions.

Smith also knows that several teams have improved, including the Golden State Warriors who signed Kevin Durant to play alongside Stephen Curry, Klay Thompson, Draymond Green and Andre Iguodala.

“We have an unbelievable opportunity to repeat,” Smith said. “We have a great nucleus of guys once again. We are starting 0-0 just like everybody else and we are so far from that. We just have to continue to get better everyday and not focus on the championship. We are going to get everybody’s best shot, so we really have to take it game-by-game.”

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Cavaliers stars LeBron James, J.R. Smith continue to cheer on Indians

By Michael Beaven Published: October 16, 2016

INDEPENDENCE: Cavaliers forward LeBron James continues to be impressed by the Indians, and players such as Francisco Lindor, Jason Kipnis, Corey Kluber, Andrew Miller and Cody Allen in the Major League Baseball playoffs.

“Terry Francona has a great system in and those guys are following it,” James said. “It’s fun to see what they are doing. They are playing great ball.”

James said he watches baseball in October and keeps up on other sports, such as football.

Cavs shooting guard J.R. Smith said he was center fielder and pitcher in baseball, before focusing on basketball full-time during his sophomore year of high school.

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Cavaliers waive Toney Douglas to make room for J.R. Smith on roster

By Michael Beaven Published: October 16, 2016

INDEPENDENCE: The Cavaliers waived point guard Toney Douglas to make room on the roster for J.R. Smith., who agreed to terms on a contract on Friday.

Cavs coach Tyronn Lue said rookie Kay Felder is the Cavs backup point guard to Kyrie Irving.

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Cavs, J.R. Smith agree to four-year deal worth $57 million

By Jason Lloyd Published: October 14, 2016

CLEVELAND: The final piece to the Cavaliers’ championship defense is in place.

The Cavaliers and J.R. Smith agreed to a four-year deal Friday that could be worth $57 million, according to a league source, returning the shooting guard to where he always wanted to be.

Smith, 31, was an unrestricted free agent who earned about $5 million with the Cavs last season. He made a career-high 204 3-pointers last season and emerged as a top two-way player. The agreement came as the Cavs were in Chicago to face the Bulls in a preseason game.

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Cavs starters, minus LeBron, pounded by short-handed Raptors 119-94

By Jason Lloyd Published: October 13, 2016

CLEVELAND: After extending the Cavaliers to six games in last season’s Eastern Conference finals, the Toronto Raptors have to again be considered the Cavs’ stiffest competition in the East until proven otherwise. Now it’s a question of how much the Raptors – and by extension the rest of the East – have closed the gap on the defending champions.

The short-handed Raptors easily handled the Cavs on Thursday, 119-94. The fact they did it without DeMar DeRozan, Terrence Ross and newcomer Jared Sullinger is – at most – only mildly troubling since this is still the preseason. The Cavs were playing without LeBron James, but otherwise started their regular lineup.

That the Raptors remain near the top of the East is a credit to re-signing DeRozan, although they failed to add a significant piece outside of Sullinger, whom they hope will be motivated to resurrect his career. Raptors coach Dwane Casey is hardly ready to make any bold predictions on whether or not the Raptors can topple the Cavs this time.

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Kyrie Irving planning final chapter of popular 'Uncle Drew' series

By Jason Lloyd Published: October 13, 2016

INDEPENDENCE: Kyrie Irving has big plans for the final chapter of his popular Uncle Drew video series, but fans are going to have to wait awhile. Irving said Thursday his busy summer, which included an NBA championship and an Olympic gold medal, prevented him from filming. He’s not expecting to release anything next summer, either.

“There is something big that we’re planning, which I’m really excited about,” Irving said. “There will be a last chapter that will happen, but I don’t think it will be on YouTube.”

Irving indicated the platform will be bigger than YouTube, where the Uncle Drew character was born and quickly became a viral sensation. It’s worth noting that Irving’s teammate, LeBron James, owns a production company now and has ties to Warner Brothers, although Irving gave no indication of anything on that large of a scale.

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LeBron James has plans to go to college once his schedule allows

By Jason Lloyd Published: October 14, 2016

INDEPENDENCE: Now that LeBron James has set the foundation for at-risk Akron kids to receive college degrees, James is ready to start down the path himself – once his schedule allows it.

“I’m signed up at the University of Akron for whenever I’m able to get a little bit of down time. That’s always been a conversation that took place to take some college courses, take some classes,” he said. “So right now I just do a lot of reading, book reading, and obviously I’m around some really good people that I kind of take their knowledge and sort it into my mind.”

James’ foundation previously secured full scholarships to Akron for all kids who complete his “I PROMISE” program and fulfill some other requirements. Now the foundation is establishing the “I PROMISE Institute” to give them the tutors and support necessary to ensure they graduate college. James’ inaugural class of third graders are now in eighth grade. The institute will be in place by the time the kids begin college.

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