The Cavaliers are expected to be without one of their three 2019 first-round picks to start the season. According to a press release issued today by the team, rookie guard Dylan Windler experienced discomfort in his lower leg and was diagnosed with a left tibial stress reaction. He’s expected to return in about four to six weeks after undergoing treatment and rehab.
Windler, who turned 23 last Sunday, was the 26th overall pick in this year’s draft, joining Darius Garland (No. 5) and Kevin Porter (No. 30) in the Cavs’ rookie class. He’s coming off an impressive senior season at Belmont, in which he averaged 21.3 PPG and 10.8 RPG with a .540/.429/.847 shooting line in 33 games.
A source tells Chris Fedor of Cleveland.com that the Cavs are “not overly concerned” about the injury and that it just needs some time to heal. It doesn’t sound like an issue that should linger and derail Windler’s rookie season.
With Windler out, the Cavs find themselves somewhat thin at small forward behind Cedi Osman. As Fedor notes, the injury may create an opportunity for Porter to play regular minutes at the three in the preseason and at the start of the regular season.