CLEVELAND — The Cleveland Cavaliers spent time and money to bolster their roster ahead of the stretch run of the regular season and NBA Playoffs, which begin next month, but the injury bug bit one of their additions, center Andrew Bogut, early in Monday’s loss to the Miami Heat.
Just one minute into his Cavaliers career, Bogut suffered a broken left tibia after a leg-to-leg collision with an opponent who was driving to the basket, and now, Cleveland (42-20) has to look for other options as it pertains to finding interior depth.
After working his way to back from a torn Achilles tendon that brought to an end his 2014-2015 season six months early, Varejao struggled to find a consistent spot in the rotation under both of the Cavaliers’ head coaches last year, David Blatt and Tyronn Lue, and as such, was traded to the Portland Trail Blazers in a three-team deal that brought sharpshooting power forward Channing Frye to Cleveland.
Before the trade, Varejao played in just 31 of the Cavaliers’ 52 games, averaging only 2.6 points per contest, by far the lowest single-season scoring output of his 11-year career.
The longest-tenured Cavaliers player at the time of the trade, Varejao averaged 7.6 points, 7.5 rebounds, 1.2 assists and 0.9 steals in 591 career games with Cleveland. Known for his hard-working, aggressive style, Varejao was a fan favorite and one of the most well-liked teammates within the Cavaliers’ locker room.
The 6-foot-11 native of Fort Pierce, Florida, spent five years with the Milwaukee Bucks, most recently during the 2014-2015 season, ironically enough playing part of that time alongside Bogut before personal issues led to his departure from the NBA.
After entering a program for anxiety and depression in the days following his release from the Bucks in February of 2015, Sanders took the time necessary to make personal changes and announced earlier this year the desire to resume his basketball career.
Over 233 career games with the Bucks, Sanders averaged 6.5 points, 5.8 rebounds and 1.8 blocks while playing 19.8 minutes a night.
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Article Courtesy of WKYC Channel 3 News Cleveland
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