NBA

Cavaliers' Kevin Love returns to face Utah

CLEVELAND (AP) Cleveland Cavaliers forward Kevin Love, who had surgery on his left knee last month, will return to the starting lineup against the Utah Jazz.

Love had surgery Feb. 14 and was originally expected to miss six weeks. The defending NBA champions are 7-6 since he was injured. Love is averaging 20 points and 11.1 rebounds, his best season since joining Cleveland in 2014.

The Cavaliers hosted the Jazz on Thursday night. General manager David Griffin said Tuesday he anticipated Love would return on the team's road trip that begins Saturday. The four-time All-Star was cleared by the medical staff after participating in drills Tuesday and Wednesday.

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Cleveland has struggled on the boards without Love, who has also been dealing with back issues. The Cavaliers were outrebounded 52-38 in Sunday's loss to Houston.