Kevin Love signed an extension with the Cavaliers that would keep him in Cleveland till the 2022-2023 season. However, instead of building around him they should trade him for assets rather than avoiding the inevitable.
The Cavaliers just came off their worst season in four years following the departure of LeBron James and it doesn’t look like they’ll be a contender during the rest of Love’s contract.
Collin Sexton, the No. 8 overall pick in the 2018 draft, progressed as the season went on, but was more of a scorer than a playmaker. Meanwhile, the team is expected to part ways with J.R. Smith and outside of Love, Sexton, Tristan Thompson, and Jordan Clarkson there’s not a lot of sure things.
Cedi Osman looks like a player who could develop into a decent role player and Larry Nance Jr. just posted the best season of his young career, but most of this team is made up potential and second-chance players. To be quite frank, the in-house talent isn’t all that much to get excited about.
Plus, part of the reason Love wanted to be traded from the Minnesota Timberwolves in the first place came from years of losing seasons and missing the playoffs. Sure Love might be content next year, and maybe even the year after, but who’s to say he won’t voice his displeasure down the road. By then he’ll be a few years past 30 and might not be worth a lottery pick anymore.
So, why not trade Love in hopes of getting a young prospect or another lottery pick?
A trade to Atlanta could be interesting considering they have two first-rounders in the lottery and their young core looks like it could be a contender sooner rather than later. Maybe a trade to the nation’s capital could be enticing, although financially it would be challenging to work a trade there. Hell, a reunion with LeBron might have both sides ecstatic. James wanted Love in Cleveland so why not reunite them in Los Angeles?
Cleveland could potentially go into the draft with three first-round picks and an opportunity to build a young core that could be a contender down the line if they select the right players. They could go into the 2019-2020 season with a possible core of Sexton, Thompson, Clarkson, Nance, and Osman while adding a couple of players like Cam Reddish, Jarrett Culver or DeAndre Hunter.
On the flip side, a team would get one of the more talented power forwards in the game who can score in the post or beyond the arc while being one of the better passers in transition at just 30-years-old, In addition they’d be paying him less than the max.
Ultimately, it’s not likely that Love would be traded seeing how supportive Cleveland was during a tragic period in his life. Yet, a trade would be more beneficial for both parties looking ahead to the future.