Wallace out with arm laceration
TORONTO -- Ben Wallace's biggest disappointment? He didn't make the catch.
Wallace explained Wednesday how he cut his right arm crashing through a car window during a street football game in Richmond, Va., over the All-Star break. Wallace needed 14 stitches to close the cut, then had more glass removed from his arm at the Cleveland Clinic the following day.
Wallace was not in the starting lineup Wednesday night at Toronto. Anderson Varejao replaced Wallace, while guard Terence Kinsey returned from a sprained ankle to start for Cleveland.
Cleveland's best defensive interior player, Wallace is averaging 3.1 points and 6.7 rebounds this season.
Asked who won the collision with the car, Wallace said he did, then paused.
"I guess," he said. "The window didn't bleed. I don't think it was made to bleed."
The play didn't go down as a reception, either.
"That was the biggest disappointment," Wallace said. "I dropped the ball. That's good D."
Wallace needed 14 stitches to close a cut on the outside of his elbow and had a series of small cuts on the inside of his forearm.
"I didn't know what to expect," he said. "It scared me more than anything. You hear the glass pop and see all the blood droplets."
Wallace has been told not to lift weights for the next little while as the cut heals but has no other restrictions.
"The movement and everything is good, it's just sore sometimes," he said. "Sometimes the stitches feel like they're pulling. As the days go on, it'll loosen up a little bit. There's no real structural damage to ligaments or nerves or tendons."
With the Cavaliers leading the Central Division and chasing Boston for the Eastern Conference lead, Wallace said injured guard Delonte West warned his teammates before the break to be careful on their midseason holiday.
"Delonte told everybody, 'When you go on this break, don't do anything that's going to stop you from coming back and being with the team. Be careful, get a couple of workouts in and just enjoy the break," Wallace said "I should have taken his advice."
It was an eventful All-Star break for Wallace, who also cut his hair, ending a near-decade stretch in braids for a shorter look.
"Nine or 10 years, that's a long time to be living," Wallace said of his braids. "I rocked it until the wheels fell off."
"You don't expect to see those guys without their braids," James said. "It's definitely different."
Copyright 2009 by The Associated Press