Cavs All-Star Kevin Love has heard his name tossed about in various trade scenarios over the past few seasons. As this campaign’s trade deadline draws near, those same rumors are beginning to make their rounds. However, the former UCLA standout says he’d be content with staying in Cleveland.
Love’s role with the Cavs has changed over the years. Gone are the days of playing alongside LeBron James and Kyrie Irving, as well as the sideline antics he shared with Richard Jefferson and Channing Frye. Enter a new era of veteran leadership under first-year head coach John Beilein.
Love, as well as Tristan Thompson, are currently serving as leaders for the young Cavs, who have struggled to find a rhythm through the first half of this season. Some players of Love’s caliber would be less than willing to accept such a job, but Kevin has said that he is accepting of this role.
“I will be happy if I’m still here,” Love said following the Cavs’ 124-112 loss to the Washington Wizards on Thursday night. “I fully plan on continuing to help these guys, continuing to help — Tristan (Thompson), myself, Larry (Nance Jr.) these guys, being a leader with all the veterans. And this place, Cleveland, the fans, they’ve been really, really good to me. So, yes.”
There are likely teams interested in Love, but they’ll need to consider the fact that he signed a four-year, $120 million extension in July of 2018. The only question is: would the Cavs be able to get enough in return for Love, a player they have placed a high value on? It might be best to wait until the offseason to make a move, as the market is sure to be active ahead of the 2020-21 campaign.
Love is still a double-double machine. He’s made 38 appearances with the Cavs this season, racking up averages of 17.4 points on 45.0 percent shooting from the field (36.6 percent from beyond the arc), 10.0 rebounds and 2.9 assists in 31.4 minutes per outing.
Love and the Cavs will be back in action on Saturday night, when they’ll serve as hosts to the Chicago Bulls. Tip-off inside Rocket Mortgage Fieldhouse is set for 8:00 p.m. ET. Cleveland will be looking to snap a six-game losing streak.