There was some thought that Kyrie Irving would play during the Cavaliers' two-game road trip after David Blatt hinted at the possibility. However that possibility will not become reality. According to a report by ESPN's Dave McMenamin, Irving is physically ready to play, but the Cavs are exercising extreme caution when it comes to his return.
This provides a lot of insight into the thought process and is worth your time, but in short it comes down to the Cavs having a championship or bust mentality and want to do everything in their power to ensure that Irving is healthy and contributing as much as possible in the playoffs. While Irving has been ruled out for Tuesday's tilt against the Celtics, a return could happen Thursday at home against the Oklahoma City Thunder. A home return for a nationally-televised game against a contender does sound like a very Kyrie Irving way to return, but as the report indicated, the Cavs may elect to continue to keep Irving out of the rotation.
A few things come to mind for me. One, Kevin Love is someone who has an equally checkered past when it comes to injuries, or quite possibly worse. The Cavs electing to keep Irving on the shelf seems somewhat contradictory to how they approached Love's return, but of course not all injuries and recoveries are created equal.
The second thought I have is regarding Irving's age and lack of a recurring injury. His past injuries have all been to separate parts of his body and there have been indications in the past that significant portions of his time missed have been a result of caution on the Cavs' behalf. Players like Russell Westbrook can go for huge stretches of time being injury free all of a sudden to fall victim to bad luck. Or they could be like Stephen Curry, who dealt with constant issues with his ankles, and at Irving's age only played 26 games. There are no guarantees, and as McMenamin pointed out, the Cavs could be running the risk of being overly protective.
The more productive measure would be for Irving to learn from Curry's story and strengthen other parts of his body to reduce any unnecessary strain to areas of concern as well as making alterations to his game. Irving cited earlier this year that he was planning on making changes to his game, adding floaters and avoiding hitting the ground as much. These changes likely will be far more meaningful to him staying on the court than an extra game or two on the sidelines, but we can only hope that the Cavs know what they're doing in managing his return this way.