CLEVELAND (AP) — Cavaliers rookie forward Dylan Windler broke his left hand in the season opener, another unlucky medical setback for the promising player.
The team said Thursday that Windler suffered a fourth metacarpal fracture (on his ring finger) when he took a hard fall in the third quarter against the Charlotte Hornets. X-rays after the game were negative, but further tests revealed the fracture.
Windler, who missed last season with a lower leg stress fracture he sustained before preseason training camp, will be re-evaluated in a week. The team said only that he will begin a rehab program and did not provide any timeline for his return.
It’s an unfortunate development for Windler, the former Belmont star taken with the No. 26 pick in 2019. Cleveland has high hopes for the 6-foot-6 shooter and exercised the third-year option on his contract before the opener.
Windler was making a strong move to the basket and was in the air when he was hit by Charlotte’s Gordon Hayward and crashed in the foul lane. Cavs center JaVale McGee covered his head after seeing Windler go down.
Windler scored three points in nine minutes before getting hurt.
The Cavs held on to beat the Hornets 121-114. They play at Detroit on Saturday before hosting the Philadelphia 76ers on Sunday.