INDEPENDENCE, Ohio — Kyle Korver and JR Smith both missed Monday’s practice, leaving their status for Tuesday’s game against the Charlotte Hornets in doubt.
Korver, more so than Smith, is the latest worry for Cleveland.
Smith was feeling sick so he didn’t make it to the practice facility. Korver, meanwhile, complained of foot soreness.
Following a spirited practice session, head coach Larry Drew said there’s a chance Korver “may not play” in either of the next two games — home against Charlotte on Tuesday and on the road the next night against the Washington Wizards.
“We’re playing the hand we’ve been dealt and we’re making no excuses,” Drew said. “Our guys are still going out there on the court and they’re laying it on the line.”
Korver is 37 years old. He’s been dealing with foot problems on and off since joining the Cavaliers. It cost him time late in the 2016-17 season. While he’s taken different measures to deal with the pain, Korver said at one point last season that years of planting and putting extra strain on his foot when coming off screens has led to the wear and tear.
The sharpshooter has tried a variety of different shoe types as well, looking for ones that are most comfortable. Earlier this season, he raved to cleveland.com about his new orthotic inserts and how much they had been helping. That was apparently short-lived.
Korver played 21 minutes against Oklahoma City on Wednesday, scoring seven points on 2-of-8 shooting. Three nights later, he scored eight points in 20 minutes.
In his 16th season, Korver is averaging 5.5 points on 45.7 percent from the field and 38.7 percent from 3-point range in 15.3 minutes — some of the worst numbers of his career.
So add Korver to the list of injuries the Cavs are trying to overcome.
Kevin Love remains sidelined for several more weeks. Sam Dekker isn’t expected back until possibly December. George Hill has missed the last two games with a strained right shoulder.
According to Drew, Cedi Osman, who didn’t play against Chicago because of lower back spasms, participated in a “couple of things” at practice on Monday and it was “good to see him move around.” He was also able to go through drills after practice with player development coach Mike Gerrity, which is a good sign of progress. But Osman remains out and Larry Nance Jr. is expected to make his second straight start in Osman’s absence against Charlotte.
Despite the numerous injuries, the Cavs remain confident when it comes to snapping their current five-game losing streak.
“It just tells me these guys are committed to getting it together, regardless of what our injury situation may be or whatever the situation may be,” Drew said. “These guys are committed to laying it on the line when they step between the lines.”