Andrew Bogut Out for Rest Of Season, Broken Tibia Won’t Require Surgery
Andrew Bogut won’t be playing for the Cleveland Cavaliers again this season.
Cavs’ Andrew Bogut out for Season, No Surgery Required
The 32-year-old Australian center was ruled out for the rest of the regular season and the playoffs on Wednesday following his horrific leg injury.
Bogut, who signed with the Cavs last week, fractured his left tibia just 58 seconds into his debut with the team on Monday when he crashed into the Miami Heat’s Okaro White. Despite the severity of the injury, however, Bogut will not undergo surgery, but instead go through “an extended period of immobilization and healing stimulation,” the Cavaliers stated. He is expected to be completely healthy by the beginning of training camp for the 2017-18 season.
Cleveland (42-20, 1st in Eastern Conference) hopes to waive Bogut in order to open up a roster spot to replace the Australian, who was acquired for both his rim-protecting and play-making skills. Bogut plans to rehabilitate in his home country with his family.
The Cavs could waive another player— DeAndre Liggins seems like a probable candidate— to compensate for the high cost it would take to replace Bogut, who is earning nearly $1 million in salary tax and luxury tax fees.
Cleveland will likely make their roster adjustment after their upcoming three-game road trip through Detroit, Orlando and Houston, according to ESPN.
The team also announced guard J.R. Smith returned to practice Wednesday for his first full session since fracturing his thumb on his right (shooting) hand last December. He is marked questionable for Thursday’s game in Detroit.
Smith is medically cleared to play, although he says he still needs to get into the right mentality.
“Mentally I just [am thinking about] going in there, swiping at the ball,” Smith said. “Diving for loose balls. That plays a factor and you never really want to go into any type of game or whatever you’re doing second guessing yourself. So, if I got to second guess myself, I won’t play. If I feel like I’m not going to, then I’ll play.”
Cavs assistant coach Larry Drew filled in for head coach Tyronn Lue on Wednesday and was impressed by Smith’s performance at practice.
“He didn’t shoot it rusty,” Drew said. “He’s still shooting the ball extremely well, but it’s a totally different story once you start getting up and down the floor. We understand that, but it’s really good to have him back.”
On Thursday, the Cavs will also miss Kyle Korver, who is receiving treatment on his sore left foot. Lue is still recovering from a sinus infection that caused him to miss Monday’s loss to Miami. He is expected to rejoin the team on Thursday in Detroit.
CLEVELAND, OH – MARCH 06: Andrew Bogut #6 of the Cleveland Cavaliers reacts after getting hurt in the first half while playing the Miami Heat at Quicken Loans Arena on March 6, 2017 in Cleveland, Ohio.