clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

J.R. Smith dealing with back issue, could miss Bulls game

If Smith sits out, rookie Cedi Osman will get his first NBA start.

Cleveland Cavaliers v Milwaukee Bucks Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images

The Cleveland Cavaliers’ new starting lineup may not see the floor together just let.

At the Cavs’ shootaround on Tuesday, J.R. Smith was in attendance, but did not participate, per cleveland.com. The team is “hopeful” that Smith will be able to play. But if he’s a no-go, rookie Cedi Osman will get his first NBA start.

Yesterday, Cavs coach Tyronn Lue stated that Smith would return to Cleveland’s starting lineup after he was moved to the bench to accommodate Dwyane Wade. But Wade asked Lue to move him to the bench and Smith got his old starting job back.

"They looked good on paper, but I just thought our spacing wasn't where it needed to be, especially for guys like Bron and D-Rose," Smith said, per cleveland.com. "I can go either way, but for us we pretty much pride ourselves on spacing the court and letting those guys get downhill. So, it looked good but it just didn't fit."

Osman would be making a leap from the bottom of the Cavs roster were he to start. So far, he has played a total of 10 minutes.

Smith first started dealing with a back issue during the season opener when it tightened up and kept him from playing in the closing moments.