A report emerged last month Kevin Love would explore the market as a free agent this summer.
Of all of the high-profile free agents this summer, executives still believe Love and LaMarcus Aldridge are the likeliest to be willing to change teams.
I still believe Love will stay in Cleveland, but it’s not difficult to the see the reasons he might leave:
- It is and will be LeBron James’ team. Love is even playing third fiddle behind Kyrie Irving.
- David Blatt doesn’t maximize Love’s skill set by using him so often as just a spot-up shooter.
- The Cavaliers’ playoff success after Love’s injury will only intensify the scrutiny he faces. If they stumble at all with him, many will see him as the variable and blame him.
- Cleveland is far from the biggest market.
Of course, there are reasons to stay – money and the best chance to win chief among them. It’s just that the decision isn’t automatic.
Aldridge has much more transparently signaled his desire to look around. At this point, nobody doubt that – though I’d predict Trail Blazers over any single team for where he begins next season.
But Love’s plans draw more contention.
It’s possible these NBA executives are wrong and Love is steadfastly committed to Cleveland. NBA executives are wrong all the time.
Perhaps, they’re relying on public set of circumstances we see and jumping to conclusions. But anyone with a vested interest in Love’s next team must ask themselves: Do these executives know additional information that we don’t? That goes a long way in determining the alert level for Love leaving.