LEBRON James said Andrew Bogut’s loss was “very deflating” but the Cavaliers are not going to sulk and are aching to get back to work.
Tristan Thompson, the man who was to be backed up by Bogut, is confident the current squad will be able to hold on.
The Cavaliers managed to keep the gap from the Celtics, who also suffered two straight losses.
The Cavaliers on Monday (Tuesday, Manila time) absorbed their second straight loss, but eclipsing that was the injury to the big man they acquired just a week ago, who was expected to give them a little boost for the playoffs.
James said he actually “heard the crack” when Bogut’s left shin collided with Miami Heat forward Okaro White’s knee in the early part of the second quarter at Cleveland’s Quicken Loans Arena.
“It’s very deflating, it’s a tough moment,” James said to reporters after the 106-98 loss.
There was a hush inside the venue as the Australian center fell to the floor and obviously in pain. Bogut was heard telling teammates and medical staff he thought his leg was broken.
The former No.1 pick had to be assisted as he left the court. The Cavs later confirmed that X-rays revealed a fractured tibia.
“We were all very excited about bringing him here and him getting some games under his belt before the playoffs,” James said. “We will hope for the best, it’s a tough one especially for him first of all and for the whole club.
“I heard it (the injury) I heard it break, as soon as the collision happened I heard it break. When I went over to him he said “I already knew I heard it crack’.
“I don't remember what we had going to that point but it took the air out the whole building. You could hear it from the fans the moment he went down, we were hoping for the best hoping it was a knee-to-knee or a knee-to-quad, but I heard it so I knew what it was already.”
Bogut was the latest player to join Cleveland and signed a $385,000 contract to play for the rest of the season. He joins Deron Williams, Derrick Williams and Kyle Korver to bolster the defending champion’s bid to defend its title.