Fantasy basketball news about Kyrie Irving is not good. It may require fantasy basketball owners to temper any expectations of the All-Star point guard during the 2015-16 NBA season. A report from CBS Sports suggests that he might not play for the Cleveland Cavaliers again until mid-January. It means he might miss half the NBA season trying to recover from surgery, lowering his fantasy value quite a bit.
This recent knee injury for Irving took place during the 2015 NBA Playoffs, ending his chances of winning a title with the Cavaliers. He will return to an improved roster in Cleveland, with the front office working hard to add more talent to a bench that didn’t have enough depth last year. Now those new players might have to play a lot of games with a key component of the roster.
This is an injury that typically takes about 3-4 months to recover from, which had many fantasy basketball owners expecting Kyrie Irving back by opening night. He probably could be, if the front office wanted him to be on the court again. The risk is that he could suffer a setback or re-injure the leg and miss even more time. Rather than taking any risk, the Cavs may bring him along very slowly, allowing the leg to be strengthened by the time January rolls around.
In head-to-head fantasy leagues, Irving could be a valuable addition later in the season. The problem, though, is that most basketball leagues don’t have injury slots to stash players, making it tough to carry an injured player for the full season. It immediately impacts his draft value in a big way, even if Irving will still average around 18 points and six assists per game down the stretch. This makes it important for owners to weigh whether or not their respective rosters can survive with a slot taken up by a player that could miss at least the first two months of the NBA regular season.
After averaging 21.5 points, 5.1 assists, and 1.5 steals per game last year, Irving proved that he could put up big numbers despite having to share the ball with LeBron James and Kevin Love. That made him an extremely valuable point guard to own in fantasy basketball, but even keeper league owners will have to think hard about his value this coming season. The Cleveland Cavaliers open on October 27 and play 30 regular season games before January 1.
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