Cleveland’s LeBron James, Kyrie Irving will rest tonight against Heat

 

 

Cleveland's LeBron James (23) and Kyrie Irving (2) will rest tonight against the Heat. (AP Photo/Brett Davis)

Cleveland’s LeBron James (23) and Kyrie Irving (2) will rest tonight against the Heat. (AP Photo/Brett Davis)

MIAMI –LeBron James and Kyrie Irving will not play tonight for the Cavaliers against the Heat, meaning Cleveland will be without all three of its all-stars.

Kevin Love continues to sit after undergoing surgery on his left. Knee.

Cleveland coach Tyronn Lue said the decision to rest James and Irving came following the Cavs’ victory last night in Atlanta. James played 39 minutes and scored 38 points on 14-of-27 shooting in Cleveland’s 135-130 victory. Irving had a game high 43 points.

“He needs the rest for what we’re trying to do for where we’re trying to go,” Lue said about James, 32.

This is the second time in the last three games in Miami that James has sat out to rest. He did not play in a Heat victory in December of 2015 and was serenaded by Heat fans with chants of, “LeBron is tired.”

The Heat are 4-0 at home against Cleveland since James left Miami to rejoin the Cavaliers in the summer of 2014.

This is the fifth game James will miss this season, all because of rest.

Lue was asked if James understands these rest days are more necessary later in his career.

“He’s gotten better,” he said. “He understands the big picture of what we’re trying to accomplish and the guy’s played so many minutes over the course of his career. Going to six straight Finals he has to take some rest at times. When I talk to our training staff and they see it’s a game he has to take off that’s what we do.

“He understands that. As much as he doesn’t like it, he has to deal with it.”

This will be the seventh game Irving misses this season, five are due to various injuries.

The Cavaliers enter 42-18, two games ahead of Boston for the best record in the East. The Heat are 28-34, 1.5 games out of the final playoff spot.

Former Heat forward will James Jones will replace James in the starting lineup. Newly acquired Deron Williams will start in place of Irving.

Irving has missed six games this season, five due to various injuries.

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