Cavs’ Kevin Love says his development as a shooter is biggest change in game over course of career
Cavs All-Star Kevin Love recently joined Sekou Smith on The Hang Time Podcast for a wide-ranging interview. Amid their discussion, Love opened up about several topics, including the elements of his game that have improved most over the course of his career.
Love entered the NBA as a true power forward. Standing at 6-foot-10 and tipping the scales at roughly 260 pounds, K-Love was a big guy. That’s not to say he wasn’t a good player, because he certainly was. In fact, within two seasons of service with the Minnesota Timberwolves, the former UCLA standout was posting double-double averages (points and rebounds).
Now, however, Love has expanded his game to the 3-point line, where he has proven to be one of the most effective stretch 4s in the league.
“I think, on the floor, something that’s more surface-level is just being able to shoot the ball,” Love said. “I think one of the big reasons Cleveland traded for me in the first place was being able to play with two ball-dominant guys like Kyrie Irving and LeBron James — LeBron being such a freight train and Kyrie being a magician with the ball and having such an unbelievable handle. With them playing downhill, you have to be able to be a knockdown shooter. And having my size and being able to shoot at a high clip and play on the perimeter a bit is a luxury.”
“I think that is one of the big things I’ve continued to evolve in my career,” Love added, referring to his perimeter shooting, “Early on in my career, I wasn’t shooting to much from the outside.”
Love is right. He really wasn’t shooting much from beyond the arc in his first few seasons (10.5 percent from downtown in his rookie campaign). However, he has steadily progressed. Last season, Love knocked down 41.5 percent of his shots from deep on nearly six attempts per game — the second-highest average of his career.