Cleveland Cavaliers point guard Kyrie Irving will miss Game 3 of the Eastern Conference Finals against the Atlanta Hawks with left knee tendinitis:
Kyrie Irving OUT for Game 3.
— Chris Vivlamore (@CVivlamoreAJC) May 24, 2015
Irving also missed Game 2 of the series with the injury, which has been bugging him since the Cavaliers’ second-round series against the Chicago Bulls. The point guard aggravated the injury in Game 1 of the Eastern Conference Finals.
While Irving was hobbled against the Bulls and didn’t play in Game 2, Cleveland hasn’t missed a beat. The Cavaliers dominated Game 2 to the tune of a 94-82 final score to take a 2-0 lead in the series. As great as Irving is offensively, his absence has allowed for some better defensive players to play a bigger role, and Cleveland’s defense has been great this postseason.
Considering the Cavaliers have that 2-0 series lead, it makes all the sense in the world to sit Irving and not risk anything. Ideally, Cleveland could just rest him until the NBA Finals, which aren’t scheduled to start until June 4.