CLEVELAND: He hasn’t been ruled out of Friday’s showdown of All-Star guards, but the Cavaliers’ Kyrie Irving missed his second consecutive game Wednesday night against the Toronto Raptors at Quicken Loans Arena with a hyperextended right knee.
A Cavs spokesman said Irving underwent an MRI on Monday in Chicago and that it confirmed their initial diagnosis. Irving’s status remains day-to-day.
Coach Byron Scott said the team would continue to take a cautious approach with the player they are building their franchise around.
Irving walked a little stiffly when passing through the locker room before the game, but declined to talk.
Irving was injured during practice Friday when he banged knees with Omri Casspi. Irving tried to play during weekend games at the Orlando Magic and Miami Heat, but told the Cavs’ staff the knee became sore when he came out of the games. The decision was made to rest him to prevent further injury.
The Cavs next play Friday at home against the Los Angeles Clippers, which would match him up against the Clippers’ Chris Paul.
“We’ll see. It would give him four days of rest,” Scott said of Irving’s status against the Clippers. “We’ll see how he feels tomorrow, if he needs treatment, if he can go out and get some shooting just to test it or wait until Friday morning and see how it feels and go through shootaround.”
Irving has missed 13 games this season, and the Cavs were 3-9 without him going into Wednesday. Last season, they went 4-11 in the games Irving sat out.
Scott isn’t sure whether Irving could play against the Clippers without practice. The Cavs will be off today.
“Normally when we do that, guys will miss a week or two, this is three or four days,” Scott said. “I’ll tackle that situation when it comes.”
Shaun Livingston started in place of Irving in Tuesday night’s 101-98 road win over the Chicago Bulls and also against the Raptors.
“I thought he played great on both ends of the floor,” Scott said of Livingston, an eight-year veteran. “Shaun brings a calming influence when he’s out there on the floor. I didn’t hesitate whatsoever when I heard Kyrie wasn’t playing that Shaun would start for us and do a great job. That was the least of my worries.”
Raptors coach Dwane Casey said the Cavs aren’t that different without Irving.
“He’s a talented player, but they play the same,” Casey said. “Dion Waiters has come in and really taken his place as far as how he plays in the attack mode, being the attacker in the fourth quarter. He did a heckuva job against a good defensive team in Chicago.”
Gund in the house
Minority owner Gordon Gund attended the Raptors’ game, his first appearance this season. Living in Princeton, N.J., Gund said he was in town for today’s trustees meeting of the George Gund Foundation; his wife, Lulie, and youngest son are on the board.
“I’m very excited how it’s coming together,” Gund said of the Cavs. “It reminds me of 1986. We had four rookies all starting on that team, too, in Brad Daugherty, John “Hot Rod” Williams, Mark Price and Ron Harper, which was a darn good group, too.
“If they get the playing time, they’re going to get much better, and Byron is willing to let them do that. The more time they get, the better they’ll get.”
Guard Daniel Gibson rejoined the team after missing three games tending to a personal matter and was active. … Scott said Casspi was home after undergoing an emergency appendectomy in Orlando on Saturday night.
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