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Cleveland Cavaliers down to 10 healthy players vs. Bulls

Caris LeVert and Sam Merrill join a laundry list of Cavaliers on the injured list.

New Orleans Pelicans v Cleveland Cavaliers Photo by David Liam Kyle/NBAE via Getty Images

The Cleveland Cavaliers’ injury crisis somehow has gotten worse.

In addition to Darius Garland, Evan Mobley, Donovan Mitchell and Ty Jerome, the Cavaliers will be without Sam Merrill due a wrist sprain and Caris LeVert due to knee tendinitis. Those six injuries, plus Ricky Rubio being away from the team, leave the Cavaliers with 10 healthy bodies for Saturday’s game against the Chicago Bulls. That includes three two-way players in Emoni Bates, Craig Porter Jr. and Isaiah Mobley. All three could very well be forced to play.

On top of leaving the Cavs thin, the mounting injuries have left Cleveland with a lopsided roster. The only healthy guard is really Porter Jr. with Isaac Okoro and Max Strus being more wings than guards. Bates is more of a wing too. It’s why, with the Cavs and Rubio discussing parting ways, that Cleveland would look to turn Rubio’s roster spot into another guard.

The Cavs’ starting five — Porter Jr., Strus, Okoro, Dean Wade and Jarrett Allen — makes sense. But the bench options — Bates, Isaiah Mobley Tristan Thompson, Damian Jones and Georges Niang — skews heavily towards wings and bigs with no other guard options. Expect heavy minutes for Porter Jr. as a result and likely for Strus too. And likely some funky lineups too with two centers on the floor and maybe Strus running point. This is going to get weird in a hurry.