Kyrie Irving is expected to have surgery on his fractured right hand.
LAS VEGAS: Byron Scott was anxious to see his new starting backcourt of Kyrie Irving and Dion Waiters during summer league games this week. They only made it through 1 ½ practices before Irving was forced to return to Cleveland after fracturing a small bone on the outside of his right hand near his pinkie.
All of the Cavs’ plans for this summer quickly imploded.
“It just really alters all the plans we had this summer as far as summer league was concerned,” Scott said. “That was Plan A. We didn’t have a Plan B going into this because you just never imagine that happening.”
Irving will be reexamined by team doctors in Cleveland, but said Saturday night he is expected to have surgery and will be sidelined 6 to 8 weeks. Irving was upset with himself after turning the ball over during Saturday’s morning practice and smacked a padded wall inside the high school gymnasium where the Cavs were practicing.
It didn’t take long for Irving to notice something was wrong. Scott didn’t see him hit the wall, but he saw Irving shaking his hand as he ran down the court.
“That was just something stupid on his part,” Scott said. “I said, ‘What did you do?’ The first thing he said was, ‘Something stupid.’ So he knew right away it was something he shouldn’t have done. He was upset with himself and he took it out on the wall. The wall won, obviously.”
Irving heard it from some fans on Twitter after the incident, prompting him to tweet late Saturday night “I didn’t punch the wall…at all” and adding later “not even my character.”
Irving missed out on summer league and most preseason opportunities last year because of the NBA lockout. He was looking forward to participating in the summer league and likely was the most talented player here.
The Cavs will not add another point guard to the summer league roster, electing instead to move forward with Donald Sloan and T.J. Campbell, who spent last season on the Canton Charge roster.
Irving should be healthy in time for the start of training camp.
“I think now we’re all going to wonder if he’s going to shoot the ball as well as he was shooting it with his right hand once he gets back,” Scott said. “That’s going to be the biggest concern, just to get all the strength back in there and not have him thinking when he takes shots, ‘Is it going to hurt?’ or ‘How’s it going to feel?’ This is probably the best time because we’ve got a lot of time before training camp starts.”