NBA notebook: Lue on hand to watch, but not coach, Cavs

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Tyronn Lue rejoined the Cleveland Cavaliers Friday night as an observer for their home game against the New Orleans Pelicans.

Lue, who took a leave of absence on March 19, has been dealing with an illness that forced him to miss all or part of three games this season before he stepped away.

Lue has reportedly been focusing on nutrition and exercise during his time away from the team.

The Cavs began Friday with a 45-30 record, third in the East standings but just a half-game ahead of the Philadelphia 76ers and Indiana Pacers.

--The NBA fined Chicago Bulls center Robin Lopez $25,000 for verbally abusing officials and failing to leave the court promptly after his ejection Thursday in Miami.

Kiki VanDeWeghe, the league's executive vice president for basketball operations, announced the fine.

Lopez picked up two technical fouls after being charged with an offensive foul with 8:43 to play in the Bulls' 103-92 loss to the Heat. He angrily gestured at officials several times as he was led to the locker room.

--Minnesota Timberwolves standout Jimmy Butler was cleared for contract drills as he continues his recovery from knee surgery, the Star Tribune of Minneapolis reported.

Butler suffered cartilage damage in his right knee in a game against the Houston Rockets on Feb. 23 and underwent surgery two days later.

Butler, a four-time All-Star, averaged 22.2 points, 5.4 rebounds and 5.0 assists in 56 games prior to the injury.

--Pistons power forward Blake Griffin will miss at least a week with a bone bruise in his right ankle, the team announced.

He was a late scratch for Thursday's win over the Washington Wizards due to the injury, missing his first game since joining the team in late January after a blockbuster trade with the Los Angeles Clippers.

Griffin has averaged 19.8 points, 6.6 rebounds and 6.2 assists in 25 games with the Pistons, who are 11-14 in that stretch.

--The Houston Rockets agreed to a two-year deal with guard Tim Quarterman, according to multiple reports.

The Rockets acquired Quarterman from the Portland Trail Blazers last offseason but he was waived prior to the start of this season.

Quarterman, 23, played part of this season in China and more recently played in 11 games for the Agua Caliente Clippers. He averaged 8.9 points, 5.3 assists and 4.3 rebounds for the G-League team.

-- Field Level Media