Cleveland Cavaliers point guard Kyrie Irving was benched on Wednesday night during a crazy loss to the Los Angeles Lakers. Cleveland head coach Mike Brown sat his franchise player and his team looked incredibly disjointed against a depleted Lakers team.
Irving played 28 minutes and scored 11 points on 5-of-14 shooting from the field. The 21-year-old added six rebounds, four assists and four steals, while turning the ball over just twice. For some reason, Brown didn’t like what Irving was bringing to the table and sat him down. Irving did not enter the game in the fourth quarter.
Wednesday night’s game was insane as the Lakers only had eight players available, but then Jordan Farmar and Nick Young were both forced out with injuries. As if things couldn’t get worse, both Chris Kaman and Robert Sacre fouled out, leaving the Lakers with just four available players.
Under NBA rules, a team can’t have fewer than five players on the court at a time, so Sacre had to stay in, but each time he committed a foul, the Lakers would be hit with an additional technical foul.
Sacre picked up his sixth and eliminating foul with 3:31 to go and, luckily for the Lakers, he managed to stay clean the rest of the way and didn’t foul anyone.
The Lakers wound up winning the game 119-108 and Steve Blake (of all people) posted a triple-double by scoring 11 points, grabbing 10 rebounds and dishing out 15 assists in 40 minutes of work. Rookie forward Ryan Kelly also put in work, scoring 26 points in 42 minutes.
It was just an incredibly bizarre game. The fact that the Lakers won a road contest while only having six healthy players (two of whom fouled out) is insane. Throw in the fact that the Cavs benched their star player and it was just a crazy night.