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Tristan Thompson benched in fourth quarter Thursday vs. Spurs

Cavaliers center didn’t play in the final frame of Cleveland’s OT win over San Antonio.

Cleveland Cavaliers center Tristan Thompson during warmups before game against the Philadelphia 76ers at Wells Fargo Center.  Eric Hartline-USA TODAY Sports

The Cleveland Cavaliers are in a bit of turmoil, though the Kardashian crowd who hates Tristan is going to get a kick out of this. Thompson was benched in the fourth quarter of Thursday’s OT win over the San Antonio Spurs. Coach John Beilein saw Tristan fail to go for a board in the third quarter, and sat him down on the bench for the rest of the game.

The benching opening up a huge spot for Kevin Love, who has been the focus of trade rumors for the past few weeks now. It appears Love will eventually be shipped to a contender, but that may be even worse news for Cleveland. The Cavs are however in a rebuild, so getting some assets back for Love makes sense. Love had a season-high 30 points and 17 rebounds in the win.

Fantasy Basketball Analysis: Cleveland Cavaliers PF/C Tristan Thompson

So let’s say Love gets traded and Beilein limits Thompson’s minutes after that happens. We should see more of a youth movement and that could lead to plenty of playing time for Cedi Osman and Larry Nance Jr. in the front court. Beilein always played smallish lineups at Michigan, so we could see Nance at the 5 and Osman at the 4. If Love leaves and Thompson doesn’t play as much, this should open up touches for youngsters Collin Sexton, Darius Garland and Kevin Porter Jr.