Thompson expected to miss a month
The worst four-game stretch of LeBron James’ career and a shocking start for the Cavaliers got a little worse Thursday.
Forward Tristan Thompson could be out a month with a strained left calf.
One of Cleveland’s most dependable players over the past few years, Thompson was injured in the second quarter Wednesday night in a loss to the Indiana Pacers.
Thompson, who has been moved out and in of the starting lineup by coach Tyronn Lue, left Quicken Loans Arena using crutches. The team said an MRI confirmed the strain and that he’ll need as much as four weeks to recover before he plays again.
Thompson’s injury is the latest setback for the Cavs, who have dropped four straight and are 3-5, not where a team expected to make it to its fourth NBA Finals figured to be at this point.
But injuries, new players, an older roster and defensive lapses have contributed to make the three-time defending Eastern Conference champions one of the early season’s surprises — for the wrong reasons.
Cleveland has lost the past four games by a combined 64 points, the most lopsided four-game span for James since he lost four in a row during his rookie season. But that’s when he was virtually alone on a Cleveland team, not one with All-Stars like Kevin Love, Dwyane Wade and Derrick Rose.
As the Cavs regrouped at practice before leaving to play the Washington Wizards tonight, there were signs of concern or panic about the slow start from such an experienced team. Losses are going to happen.
“No one in here is a rookie,” Wade said. “Everyone in here has been through it. Lots of guys have been through the highest of the highs and the lowest of the lows. It’s frustrating when you’re going through it. We have to continue to understand that we’re going to get out of this together and this is going to be a distant memory at one point, but right now we’re in it. We have to figure it out and I think we will.”
Wade said communication, or a lack of it, has been at the root of Cleveland’s problems.