The Cavaliers have dropped back-to-back games to fall to 4-4 on the “new season” since their eventful trade deadline in which they completely shuffled the roster by bringing in four new players and shipping out six old ones.
The early returns for the Cavs were very good, but they have since cooled off after the All-Star break, and they look like a team that’s still learning how to play together. Part of that learning process is the players on the court figuring things out, while another part is Ty Lue understanding what his rotations should be with the influx of new players.
Starting Monday night against the Pistons, Lue will be forced into another starting lineup change as Tristan Thompson, who was reinserted into the starting five in late January, will be out for “multiple games” with a sprained right ankle, as the team announced on Sunday.
Thompson was injured against the Nuggets and will apparently miss significant time, although it’s not clear exactly how long. While losing a starter is not a thing any team wants to see happen, Thompson’s absence will give Larry Nance Jr. an opportunity to start and will give Lue an opportunity to see if Nance’s great play in Cleveland can be sustainable with more playing time.