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Report: LeBron James (illness) misses shootaround, questionable for tonight vs. Bulls

LeBron James

Tonight, the NBA’s defending champion Cleveland Cavaliers will square off against the Chicago Bulls inside Quicken Loans Arena for a divisional bout at 8:30 p.m. EST.

The Cavs have been dealing with a few injuries to their rotation this season, including J.R. Smith’s fractured thumb and now Kevin Love’s knee. Both are expected to make returns sometime before the team makes its playoff run. Tonight, however, the Cavs could be without the services of LeBron James, who missed this morning’s shootaround due to an illness.

On the season, James is averaging 25.7 points, 8.9 assists, 7.8 rebounds, and 1.4 steals in 37.5 minutes per game (second-highest minutes per game average in the NBA).

James has missed just three games this season, playing in 53 of the Cavs’ 56 games. All have come on the road, and all have resulted in losses. Riding a four-game winning streak, the Cavs will look to push it to five straight wins regardless of whether James plays.

In the second era of LeBron James in Cleveland, his team has a record of 4-18 when he doesn’t play. The Cavs have a talented roster without James, but it’ll be a very tough game to win without him. The last Cavaliers’ win without LeBron James in the lineup came on March 16, 2016 when they defeated the Dallas Mavericks at home, 99-98. Kyrie Irving put up 33 points on 13-28 shooting from the field while Kevin Love added 23 points of his own and J.R. Smith had 13 points that night. This time, however, the team will already without Love and Smith.

If The King can’t play tonight, expect to see Richard Jefferson get the starting nod in his place.

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