Anderson Varejao Likely Out for Season
The Cavs announced that results of an MRI revealed "a complete tear of the peroneus longus in the midfoot of the right ankle and foot," which will likely require surgery. The news came shortly before Cleveland was set to take on the Suns in Phoenix, and head coach Byron Scott talked about it during his pregame meeting with the media.
"Obviously we got some bad news today about Anderson Varejao," Scott said. "Torn tendon in his right foot, there's a possibility obviously that he could miss the rest of the season. That's a big blow to us, because I thought Andy was playing at an All-Star-caliber level, especially in the Eastern Conference, I thought he was maybe behind Dwight Howard as the best center in the East. It's a big blow because of what he means to us from an emotional standpoint, as well."
Scott said that the nature of the injury made it even more disappointing, considering the fact that it occurred near the end of practice, and didn't involve any contact with another player.
"For him to go down that way, I mean, in practice on the last drill, just running up and down the floor, no contact whatsoever -- that's tough," Scott said. "I saw it, and I thought he kind of just buckled, I thought maybe he just turned his ankle a little bit. He finished the drill out, and I said, 'Andy, you alright?' And he said, 'I don't know what I did, it's just starting to hurt a little bit.' It was that crazy. Just an end-of-practice conditioning drill."
The Cavs have dropped 19 of their last 20 games, and between the injury to Varejao and the unavailability of Joey Graham, Daniel Gibson, Leon Powe, and Anthony Parker, the team is going with a new starting lineup. Christian Eyenga and Manny Harris will start alongside Mo Williams, Antawn Jamison, and J.J. Hickson.
"Like we've been saying for a while: all these young guys that we have, we have them here for a reason," Scott said. "Now everyone will get an opportunity to play some more minutes, and significant minutes. We're going to continue to develop these guys to see if they can be something special."