#Cavs Darius Garland is OUT tonight in Indy with lower back soreness.
— Chris Fedor (@ChrisFedor) February 11, 2022
Garland had missed four straight games for the Cavs before returning on Wednesday against the San Antonio Spurs, but it appears he isn’t healthy enough to go in Friday’s matchup.
Garland was solid against the Spurs on Wednesday, as he put up 27 points on 12-of-15 shooting. He also posted five rebounds and six assists. Additionally, he hit all three of his 3-point attempts.
The Cavs have shown an ability to get by without Garland, as they went 3-1 in the four straight games he missed prior to Wednesday’s contest. They’ll have to find that same success again on Friday.
The Cavs are near the top of the Eastern Conference, as they have a 34-21 record through their first 55 games this season.
It will be interesting to see if Caris LeVert takes on a bigger role in Cleveland’s offense in Garland’s absence. LeVert had 11 points on 4-of-11 shooting in his debut for the team against the Spurs.
LeVert can play on the ball, so it is possible that the team will let some of the offense run through him with Garland out. This season, Garland is averaging 8.1 assists per game, so the team will look to replace that production on Friday.
The Pacers, LeVert’s former team, traded away several players at the deadline. This is a game that the Cavs could win even though Garland won’t be in the lineup.