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Kyle Korver's return on Cavs' road trip slides from imminent to maybe

By JOE VARDON • Mar 19, 2017 at 5:10 PM

 

Kyle Korver's left foot still hurts.

Korver, the Cavs' sharpest shooter acquired in a trade from Atlanta on Jan. 7, hasn't played since March 6 -- missing Cleveland's last six games because of inflammation on the side of his left foot.

Korver will miss his seventh game when the Cavs play the Lakers Sunday night, and at best the team and player can only say they hope Korver is available for Cleveland's game in Denver Wednesday. What seemed like an imminent return for Korver on this four-game trip -- early on this trip, too -- now sounds like more of a maybe.

This is not a case of the Cavs being overly cautious with Korver, in the way they chose to rest LeBron James, Kyrie Irving, and Kevin Love against the Clippers Saturday night. Korver is still injured.

"There's still something in there," Korver told cleveland.com. "It's getting better but it hasn't come along like I'd hoped. I should've stopped playing on it a week and a half earlier. Now that I'm out, we might as well let it come all the way back, but it just hasn't yet."

Korver has said he was dealing with the injury since at least March 1, which intensified over the first weekend of this month when he played in back-to-back games and three games in four nights. He hasn't played since.

Korver is third in the NBA this season in 3-point shooting .447 and is averaging 11.1 points since joining the Cavs. He turned 36 on Friday, and said if this were the playoffs he'd "just take some (legal) drugs and play."

For days, coach Tyronn Lue has said Korver's foot is improving. That's still Lue's line, though now he's added that Korver needs to go through a practice (scheduled for Tuesday in Los Angeles) to test his foot before he plays.

"They want to kind of see him go through a practice before he does anything serious and that's understandable," Lue said. "Hopefully we'll have him pretty soon coming up."

Meanwhile, Iman Shumpert missed no additional time despite suffered a sprained left shoulder Thursday Utah big man Rudy Gobert fell on him. Shumpert played 25 minutes and scored 10 points on 5-of-11 shooting in the Cavs' 108-78 loss to the Clippers.

"I'll live," Shumpert said. He told teammates that Los Angeles' Jordan Crawford was pulling on his injured shoulder throughout the game.

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