CLEVELAND (AP) — Kyrie Irving wanted to play in all 82 games this season. Now the Cleveland Cavaliers hope he will only miss one.
The All-Star point guard sat out for the first game of the season Thursday night, missing the Cavaliers' game against Orlando because of a bruised left knee.
Irving, averaging a team-leading 22.2 points, was injured in the third quarter Tuesday in a 91-76 loss at Indiana. Irving felt a "pop" as he fell awkwardly on a drive to the basket, but an MRI on Wednesday revealed he only bruised the knee.
Cavaliers coach Mike Brown believes it's best to be cautious with his star player, who is listed as day-to-day. Cleveland's next game is Saturday at Brooklyn and the Cavaliers host Indiana on Sunday.
"I think he understands what he needs to do to help make sure he takes care of his body long term and not think about the short term," Brown said. "I don't think it's a big problem for him."
Irving, who worked out at Quicken Loans Arena prior to Thursday's game, will receive additional treatment and rest. The former No. 1 overall pick has been injury prone during his NBA career. Irving missed 38 games in his first two seasons with a variety of injuries.