With the NBA trade deadline approaching, Kevin Love finds himself once again as a topic of discussion.
February is normally a time when love is celebrated as Valentine’s Day is smack dab in the middle of the month. However, in the case of the Kevin Love, trade rumors are far from lovely.
Cleveland’s All-Star forward has also been battling the injury bug. Love was experiencing back spasms for the Cavaliers’ last two games but should be available tonight against the New York Knicks.
Speaking of the Knicks, Love has been mentioned in trade talks involving Carmelo Anthony since the beginning of the year. Love has gotten used to the rumors so he isn’t fazed by the speculation this time.
“I predicted that,” he said about the possibility of landing in New York. “I said it doesn’t matter if I have an All-Star year or its one start or the other, it’s always going to be there, right?”
Love was an integral piece to the Cavaliers’ first NBA championship puzzle last season and is having his best since arriving to Cleveland.
Since Matthew Dellavedova’s departure last summer and the injury to J.R. Smith’s thumb, the Cavaliers have been in desperate need of a playmaker to take the pressure off LeBron James and Kyrie Irving while they’re on the bench. James is leading the league in minutes at 32-years old, which makes no sense.
While a Love for Anthony trade sounds exciting, it’s not a good deal for the Cavaliers at this point in the season. By trading the power forward to the Knicks, the team loses one of its primary rebounders. Anthony is averaging 6.1 rebounds and Love is grabbing 11 per game. That means more work for James and Tristan Thompson to pick up the slack.
The defending champions have hit their annual mid-season growing pains. In January 2015, the team traded for Smith and Ivan Shumpert. In January 2016, the Cavaliers fired then head coach David Blatt and promoted Tyronn Lue to take the reins of the team.
The Cavaliers went 7-8 in the month of January. That is a problem. As the Feb. 23 trade deadline gets closer, expect things to heat up in Cleveland.
Will Love survive the rest of the month as a Cav? Could the Cleveland arrange a trade to receive Carmelo without including Love in the deal? Only time will tell.