The 12-man roster for Team USA at the Tokyo Olympics is coming into focus, but there are some roster spots left to be determined. Apparently, Cavs big man Kevin Love is still a candidate to be on the team, according to The Athletic.
The current Team USA commitments include Kevin Durant, James Harden, Devin Booker (still playing in the playoffs), Damian Lillard, Jayson Tatum, Bradley Beal, Draymond Green and Bam Adebayo. Green and Adebayo aren’t exactly great floor-spacing options as big men, so Love could fill that void.
Multiple sources said Cleveland Cavaliers’ former All-Star Kevin Love was interested in another Olympics run, and Popovich was interested in bringing him aboard. Whether Love ultimately steps forward, or USAB even extends him an invitation, remains to be seen.
Kevin Love has had a rough go of it since signing a four-year extension with the Cavs after the second departure of LeBron James. The veteran big man has dealt with a lot of losses and numerous injuries, resulting in frustration and multiple outbursts. His name has been involved in trade rumors for a while, and many wonder if he’ll wound up getting bought out.
When it comes to Team USA, Love does have Olympic experience and a skill set suited for international play. Having a veteran presence like this on the team makes some sense, even if Love’s play has declined in recent years. Love playing in Tokyo could also just rejuvenate him and perhaps even help his value.
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Playing for Popovich, and surrounded by stars like he was on the 2012 Olympic team (and later, in a different context, on those Cavs teams that went to four Finals), could rejuvenate Love and otherwise be a very good, refreshing experience for him, multiple sources who know him said. If Love wants to be traded out of Cleveland or the Cavs’ front office would like to move him, playing well (and looking healthy) during a Team USA training camp and Olympics run would be a good start toward boosting his market value.
Team USA is hoping to finalize its Olympic roster this week. We’ll see if Kevin Love makes the team.