Report: Cavs to be undermanned vs. Thunder as Kevin Love and Donovan Mitchell remain out

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Ken Blaze-USA TODAY Sports

The Cleveland Cavaliers will look to get back in the win column on Saturday in a game against the Oklahoma City Thunder, but they’ll have to do it without Donovan Mitchell and Kevin Love.

Both players will be out Saturday, and that will certainly make things more difficult for the talented Cavs squad.

Mitchell has been dominant for the Cavs in his first 23 games with the franchise, averaging 29.0 points, 4.9 assists and 4.0 rebounds per game on 49.6 percent shooting from the field and 42.4 percent shooting from deep.

As for Love, his days as a star and offensive focal point are behind him, but he’s still an important part of Cleveland’s rotation. He’s posting 10.0 points and 7.1 rebounds per game this season while typically coming off the bench.

Love is shooting the ball well from beyond the arc, hitting 38.6 percent of his deep shots on the season.

Though the absence of both players will make things more difficult for the Cavs on Saturday, they still have more than enough talent to get a win.

Darius Garland will facilitate the offense in the game and look to get his teammates going. Of course, he did that plenty last season without Mitchell.

The 16-10 Cavs are still in the No. 3 seed in the Eastern Conference and should be able to handle the 11-14 Thunder.

Still, the Cavs will have to figure out a way to contain Thunder star Shai Gilgeous-Alexander. The Canadian national is putting up 31.1 points, 6.0 assists and 4.7 rebounds per game this season.

If Cavs head coach J.B. Bickerstaff and company can find a way to slow him down in the game, a win should follow.

Unfortunately, the Cavs have lost winnable games recently. Their game on Friday against the Sacramento Kings was one such occurrence.

They were leading 90-83 with just over 7:30 remaining in the game, but they were then outscored by a wide margin to close out the contest and ended up falling 106-95.

After Saturday’s bout, the Cavs have more winnable games on the horizon. They’ll face the San Antonio Spurs on Monday, Dallas Mavericks on Wednesday and Indiana Pacers on Friday.

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Jonathan is a freelance writer, filmmaker, and passionate fan of the NBA. In the past Jonathan has covered politics, entertainment, travel, and more. He is a proud contributor of Cavaliers Nation.