CLEVELAND — Kevin Love remains in concussion protocol and uncertain for Game 3 of the NBA Finals.
The Cavaliers forward was accidentally elbowed in the back of the head by Golden State’s Harrison Barnes during the first half of Game 2 on Sunday night. Love stayed in the locker room and did not practice with teammates Tuesday. The Cavs won’t know if he can play until before Game 3 on Wednesday.
“He’s feeling better,” Cleveland coach Tyronn Lue said. “But right now he’s just in the (NBA) concussion protocol.”
Love, who missed most of the playoffs and finals last year with a dislocated shoulder, was not seen while the Cavs practiced at Quicken Loans Arena before the Warriors held their workout. The team said Love was in the building and was checked by the medical staff.
According to league policy, Love is required to pass several steps before he can be cleared to play. First, he must be symptom free for 24 hours. He then will steadily increase his activity, beginning with riding a stationary bike before advancing to jogging, agility work and noncontact team drills.
Lue would not disclose how he will juggle his lineup if Love can’t play. The Cavs are down 2-0 and have been overwhelmed by the Warriors so far.
Whether Love is available or not, LeBron James said the Cavs’ focus can’t change.
“It’s going to be the next man up,” James said. “We’re down 0-2, and we can’t afford to look and say, “Wow, Kev’s not playing. What are we going to do?” It’s next man up because it’s a must-win for us. So obviously his health is very important, but in the situation we’re in now, we’ve got to stay confident. And whoever coach decides to give the nod to got to be ready to go, and everybody else has to step up.”