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Special day for Ilgauskas is coming

The Sports Xchange
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The Cavaliers could use some good news after losing their last two games by a combined 66 points.

It's only a matter of time before the Cavaliers retire former center Zydrunas Ilgauskas' No. 11 jersey.

It's not a matter of if. It's a matter of when.

It will happen, probably this season. No ceremony has been scheduled for the special assistant to general manager Chris Grant.

The Cavs haven't had any discussions yet regarding the event, but they'll eventually schedule it. They'll have to make sure the schedules of Cavs owner Dan Gilbert, Grant, Ilgauskas and his family line up. Ilgauskas' two adopted sons are going to school in the Miami area.

"We didn't talk about any of the specifics," Ilgauskas said recently. "If that day will come, it will be a big honor and a great accomplishment."

He was a first-round pick of the Cavs in the 1996 draft. He spent the next 14 years in Cleveland before leaving in free agency in the summer of 2010. He played one year with the Miami Heat where he reached the NBA Finals for the second time in his career.

Ilgauskas, 36, is the Cavs' all-time leader in games played (771), total rebounds (5,904), offensive rebounds (2,336) and blocked shots (1,269). He's second only to LeBron James in points (10,616).

He averaged 13.0 points, 7.3 rebounds and 1.6 blocks in his career.

Other numbers that are retired belong to Bingo Smith (7), Larry Nance (22), Mark Price (25), Austin Carr (34), Nate Thurmond (42) and Brad Daugherty (43). Retired radio broadcaster Joe Tait also has a banner in the rafters at Quicken Loans Arena.

The Cavaliers lost to Atlanta on Friday, 121-94. They'll have an opportunity to get straightened out in Miami on Tuesday, but don't count on it. That has the potential to get ugly as well.

Copyright (C) 2012 The Sports Xchange. All Rights Reserved.

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