Cleveland Cavaliers point guard Kyrie Irving has returned to the team, participating in five-on-five drills for the first time since breaking his right hand on July 14. Irving broke his hand after slapping a padded wall in frustration during a practice with the Cavs' summer league team.
Irving had surgery on July 18, and although he was able to work on his left-handed dribbling skills, he told Yahoo! Sports' Marc Spears that his right hand was essentially useless throughout much of the rehab:
"I couldn't tie my shoes," Irving said. "I couldn't put my belt on. There were a few things I couldn't do. I couldn't cook, open up juice. I had my best friend and my father with me all the time."
Irving, the No. 1 pick in the 2011 NBA Draft, burst onto the scene last season, averaging 18.5 points and 5.4 assists en route to the Rookie of the Year Award. The injury was a bit of a set back after the strong rookie campaign, but the blossoming star has a chance to get even better.
Returning to practice is a good start.