Kevin Love has said that he will return to the Cleveland Cavaliers next season, but a lot of athletes say a lot of things that don’t always come true, either intentionally or unintentionally.
So while Love says he’ll return, how solid is it that he’ll do just that?
“Well, I think it’s very solid,” Fox Sports NBA writer Sam Amico said on CBS Sports Radio’s The DA Show. “It sounds like he has every intention to return and give this another run with LeBron James and Kyrie Irving. He saw how close they came. He helped them get out of the first round (against Boston), which was fairly (easy), but he was obviously injured. It’s really, to me, from the sounds of things not a matter of if he’s coming back, but a matter of for how much and for how long this next contract is going to be. Is it going to be another one-and-one deal where he takes advantage of the salary cap? He was asking around – even during the season, asking teammates – should I take the max right now or should I go for the one-and-one and wait for the salary cap? So it sounds like, again, it’s not a matter of if he’s coming back but how this contract will be structured.
Love, 26, averaged 16.4 points, 9.7 rebounds and 2.2 assists in 75 games last season, playing in a more limited role than he had in Minnesota. If he is willing to turn down the Los Angeles Lakers – and other potential free-agent suitors – does that mean all the talk about Love and LeBron James not being on the same page was overblown a bit?
“Yeah, there’s some truth to it,” Amico said. “I think Kevin’s got a very, I guess he comes across as aloof. Even though he’s got a very dry sense of humor, he’s not going to be real animated. But I think all that talk was overstated. I think the bottom line is it doesn’t matter if you get along with your teammates. Who cares? As long as you don’t despise each other – and LeBron James and Kevin Love don’t despise each other by any stretch – you just have to be on the same page on the court. And I think toward the end of the season, it was pretty evident that they were.”
The Cavaliers started 19-20 but went 34-9 the rest of the way. Even more impressive, they went 33-3 down the stretch with Love, James and Kyrie Irving all healthy and in the lineup.
“That’s hard to beat,” Amico said. “I mean, if you’re not getting along, then what are you going to do? Get along and go 36-0? To me, that talk is overstated because they were having great success on the floor.”