Perhaps no singular player has garnered as much intrigue for the upcoming off-season than Cleveland Cavaliers’ forward Kevin Love. Even if he may not be the most coveted potential free agent or trade target on the market like he was last July, seeing the emergence of Andrew Wiggins over the course of the season in Minnesota and how things unfolded in Cleveland with his role seemingly dwindling with each passing game, some really started to believe Love would use his player option and be a goner this summer.
Dave McMenamin who covers the Cavaliers and the NBA for ESPN, tweeted this Sunday:
Kevin Love on next season: “I truly expect to be suiting up for Game 1.” For the Cavs? Love: “Yes, sir.”
— Dave McMenamin (@mcten) May 31, 2015
Surely that could mean almost nothing. It’s not as though Kevin Love is going to come out and say he’s heading to Los Angeles while the Cavs are getting ready for the NBA Finals on Thursday against the Golden State Warriors, but I do think the comment has some merit.
There’s probably a better-than-decent chance that if Love were on the market this July he’d still receive a max contract offer, but there is at least the slight possibility that he doesn’t, and that’s because he’s coming off his worst statistical season since 2009-10. It was the first time he didn’t average a double-double since his rookie year, and the way he was used in Cleveland’s offense at times made him seem like a glorified version of James Jones.
So with his reputation as a player taking a fairly big hit this season and the salary cap set to increase in a year, it doesn’t exactly make financial sense for Love to seek a max contract this July as opposed to next.
And who knows, maybe Cleveland loses to Golden State in the finals this year and Love returns healthy next year and they win it. That could certainly raise the amount of suitors for his services in the summer of 2016.
Featured image: fansided.com