Okoro, who is dealing with a strained hamstring, will miss his second straight game of the season.
“While there’s no word on Okoro’s availability for Saturday in Phoenix or the road trip finale against Charlotte on Monday, the injury was originally expected to cause at least a multi-game absence, with internal belief that it could extend through the weekend,” Cleveland.com’s Chris Fedor wrote.
Okoro’s absence isn’t ideal for Cleveland, as the 2020 first-round pick is one of the team’s key rotation players.
This season, Okoro is averaging 7.0 points, 2.8 rebounds and 1.8 assists per game while shooting 47.8 percent from the field and 20.0 percent from 3. He’s appeared in four of the Cavs’ five games and is averaging 27.0 minutes per game.
Okoro was a starter for the Cavs during his rookie season, starting all 67 of the games that he played in.
This year, he’s taken on a role as a reserve, but that doesn’t mean Cleveland won’t have a hard time filling his place in the rotation.
Lamar Stevens is one player who could step up against the Lakers in Okoro’s absence.
“With Okoro out Wednesday night, Lamar Stevens received extended playing time — and could be called on again Friday for his defensive capabilities in a matchup against the star-studded Los Angeles Lakers,” Fedor wrote.
After starting the season 0-2, the Cavs have won three consecutive games.
Even with Okoro out, the Cavs’ young core of Evan Mobley, Jarrett Allen, Collin Sexton and Darius Garland has impressed so far this season.
The Lakers and Cavs are scheduled to tip off at 10:30 p.m. EST on Friday night.