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CLEVELAND (AP) — Cavaliers guard Dion Waiters has returned after missing seven games with a knee injury, giving the club a key component for its playoff push.

Waiters hyperextended his left knee on Feb. 18 against Philadelphia. He was cleared Tuesday night before the Cavs hosted the San Antonio Spurs.

Waiters is averaging 14.3 points in 40 games for the Cavs, who are entering a tough stretch of their schedule. Cleveland entered the night 3½ games behind Atlanta for the final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference.

Despite getting Waiters back, the Cavs are still short-handed. Center Anderson Varejao missed his 11th straight game with a sore back and swingman C.J. Miles sat out his seventh game in a row with a sprained left ankle.

Varejao has been doing some on-court work in practice and is close to returning.

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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