In recent Cleveland Cavaliers trade news, it appears Kevin Love’s injury and required surgery could mean the team needs to make a move. On Tuesday, it was learned that the Cavs power forward is going to be out of action for six weeks, which means he’ll miss the big game on Sunday, and all but the final two weeks of this 2016-17 NBA season. That could be troublesome for a Cleveland team that seemed destined for the NBA Finals as several contenders are still waiting in the wings in the Eastern Conference. Will the Cavs trade Kevin Love in lieu of the recent injury update, or make another move to help their roster?
According to CBS Sports, Love will miss a total of six weeks due to having arthroscopic surgery on his left knee. Love’s injury will, in fact, end all of those crazy Cavs trade rumors involving Love for Anthony or other players. It will also mean more work for other players on the team, with LeBron James probably getting the bulk of it on his shoulders. As much as some Cleveland fans might dream of seeing Melo suit up next to “King James,” it is not about to happen now. James will probably have to play more power forward than before. Channing Frye is there, but he is not exactly the best option for more minutes. Could that mean bringing in someone else in a trade, though?
Just recently, Cleveland’s opponent in last year’s Eastern Conference Finals made a big move. The Toronto Raptors, flexed their trade muscles by acquiring Orlando’s Serge Ibaka in a deal involving Terrence Ross, as reported Tuesday. Ibaka is well known for his time spent with the Oklahoma City Thunder, as he was a key component of OKC’s playoff successes. However, the team opted to deal him during the offseason mostly to try to make room for Durant and for other potential players to join KD on the roster. Now with Ibaka joining Toronto, it certainly strengthens their interior and also provides a guy capable of knocking down a three-pointer here or there.
There’s also those Boston Celtics, who have flown under the radar quietly but are near the top of the East. Behind the star power of one of the league’s top scorers, Isaiah Thomas, and their offseason acquisition, Al Horford, this team is certainly a contender that Cleveland should not overlook. At 37-16, the Boston Celtics are just two games back from Cleveland for the Eastern Conference standings lead, and with Love’s injury, it could mean Boston grabs overall homecourt advantage in the East playoff picture. Other teams within the top four are Washington and Atlanta, but Boston seems to have the best chance at dethroning the champs.
With that in mind, Cleveland’s management is probably brainstorming now. The NBA trade rumors will probably linger a bit as to whether or not Cleveland should consider bringing in Carmelo Anthony from the New York Knicks. On Tuesday, NBA analyst Chris Broussard was on The Herd w/Colin Cowherd on Fox Sports 1 and said it’s certainly interesting to contemplate, although he wouldn’t make that trade.
— Herd w/Colin Cowherd (@TheHerd) February 14, 2017
A different Cavs trade might still happen before the deadline, as CBS Sports mentions. Potentially, the team could deal DeAndre Liggins, Iman Shumpert, or other assets in order to acquire more help in the frontcourt. As it stands right now, the trade deadline arrives on Thursday, February 23, which gives the Cavs front office a bit over a week to put together a deal of some sort.
The ESPN website ran a poll for readers on Tuesday asking what would be the best move for Cleveland to make in terms of dealing with the Kevin Love injury. Options included trading for another power forward or checking the waiver wire for options after the trade deadline. However, two choices are winning above the others in the poll. “Pursue a trade for Carmelo Anthony” has 32 percent of the votes, while “Stay the course and wait for Love to return” has the majority 36 percent vote as of this report.
There’s the old adage, “If ain’t broke, don’t fix it.” In the case of Love, his knee was recently fixed via surgery, but the bigger story has been how well he’s played for the team this season. In that case, it seems to make the most sense for the team to deal with the adversity and have Love back. They’ll need him to deal with the likes of Boston and Toronto in the postseason.
Should the Cleveland Cavaliers make some sort of trade ahead of next Thursday’s deadline, or check the waiver wire when they can? What move would help them most as they await Kevin Love’s return from his injury?
[Featured Image by Christian Petersen/Getty Images]