Andrew Wiggins can breathe easier now. He’s been told he’s going to remain a Cavalier.
Wiggins, the Cavalier’s first round pick in this year’s NBA draft, has been at the center of the hottest trade talk so far this summer. Now that LeBron James has announced his intentions to return to Cleveland, and Chris Bosh accepting max money in Miami, the league’s focus is on Kevin Love, Minnesota’s disgruntled but talented forward.
According to Cleveland.com, Love has told Timberwolves’ executives he will not sign an extension, meaning he will be a free agent after the next season. The Timberwolves would like to trade Love to get something in return instead of losing Love outright. Love has stated he would be very interested in joining the Cavaliers to play alongside LeBron James. James, in his essay about his decision, did not mention Wiggins. This may have been an error, or a preview of coming (or, if Wiggins is indeed traded, going) attractions. However, the Timberwolves are asking that Wiggins be part of any trade package. This is where it gets a bit cloudy.
The Cavaliers seemed to be initially interested in adding Wiggins into a package to land Love. That now seems to be the last thing they want to do, after Wiggins began NBA Summer League play this week. A source close to the situation said Wiggins has been assured by Cavaliers management he will not be traded. According to the Morning Journal, the Cavaliers have reportedly offered guard Dion Waiters, forward Anthony Bennett, and a first-round pick to the Timberwolves for Kevin Love, as well as possibly shooting guard Kevin Martin. Minnesota seems set on Wiggins being a part of any trade.
Wiggins, the former Kansas swingman and overall number one pick in the draft, has been tied to any trade for Love until James’ announcement. Keeping Wiggins makes sense for Cleveland, now that LeBron has returned. LeBron can mentor Wiggins, who looks to be primed for stardom in the NBA. The 6-foot-8, 194-pound Wiggins has an incredible 44-inch vertical leap. His athleticism lags a bit behind his basketball skills, but that will develop under James and new coach David Blatt. Wiggins can provide some depth as he learns the NBA game.
Wiggins, in his Summer League debut for the Cavaliers, scored 18 points in 31 minutes on 7-of-18 shooting. He was 1-of-8 on 3-pointers, including an air ball.