Once you look past Kyrie Irving, Anderson Varejao has not only been the Cavaliers’ best and most consistent player this season, he’s also been the subject of trade discussions and rumors that may see him dealt before the deadline, should teams covet him enough to offer enough of a package.
Durability is the only question surrounding Varejao, with his skill set evolving to the point where it’s largely beyond reproach. His injury issues have begun to surface this season, and after missing his team’s last two games, Cavaliers head coach Byron Scott is taking the cautious approach, and appears to be in no hurry to rush him back.
Anderson Varejao will be a game time decision [Friday], although coach Byron Scott said this morning he is leaning toward resting Varejao’s bruised knee through the weekend.
“I’m thinking about keeping him out no matter what,” Scott said at Friday morning’s shootaround. “I told him, even if they clear him, it will be my decision.”
Varejao has endured a rash of injuries the last few years, something Scott said will likely continue given his style of play.
“He’s going to have bumps and bruises,” Scott said. “You just hope he stays away from the serious injuries. He’s got a pretty bruised knee right now and we want to get that thing as healthy as possible.”
The Cavaliers need Varejao if they’re going to have a chance to win games, which is something the team hasn’t done much of while sitting at just 5-22 on the season.
Cleveland lost by 10 to the Pacers on Friday, but with the team so far out of the hunt for anything meaningful record-wise, it makes sense to hold out Varejao as long as necessary — especially if he’s the one valuable piece the franchise may be willing to part with in order to deal for assets that will help in the future.