Certain players cannot avoid being part of the NBA trade rumors carousel, and one of those players is Cleveland Cavaliers power forward Kevin Love. Love has been long-rumored to be on the trading block due to his subpar performance in the 2016 NBA Finals and the insistence of many observers that he isn't a good fit alongside LeBron James and Kyrie Irving, as detailed in a report by ESPN's FiveThirtyEight.
Another top player who has recently been mentioned in the rumor mill is New York Knicks small forward Carmelo Anthony. Anthony is playing on an expensive contract (four years, $124 million), he's on the downside of his career after 13 years in the NBA, and the Knicks do not appear to be a serious contender in 2016-17. Fox Sports discusses Anthony's situation in New York, the possibility that he might be dealt to Cleveland to play with his good friend LeBron James, and team president Phil Jackson's assertion that Carmelo Anthony has a tendency to hold onto the basketball too long and stall the team's offense.
"He can play that role that Michael Jordan and Kobe Bryant played, that's a perfect spot for him, to be in that isolated position on the weak side. Because it's an overload offense and there's a weak-side man that always has an advantage if the ball is swung."
"Carmelo, a lot of times, wants to hold the ball longer than — we have a rule, if you hold a pass two seconds, you benefit the defense. So he has a little bit of a tendency to hold the ball for three, four, five seconds, then everybody comes to a stop. That is one of the things we work with. But he has adjusted to it, he knows what it can do and he's willing to see its success."
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The Los Angeles Lakers excited their fan base with a good start to the 2016-17 campaign, but they have recently fallen on hard times (their record has now dipped to 12-22). As a result, the Lakers' inclusion in the rumor mill has ramped up and there has been a great deal of talk swirling around the team, including this piece from Yibada that discusses the possibility of Kevin Love returning to his home state of California to play for the Los Angeles Lakers.
"While Love was a contributor to the Cavaliers success in their 2016 NBA Championship, he has yet to win over the team's affection," said Fansided's Bret Stuter.
"Stories abound with his 'misfit' with the current roster, and his defense stood out as a weakness."Current NBA trade rumors are pointing toward a potential deal between the Los Angeles Lakers, Cleveland Cavaliers and New York Knicks. The scenario that is being discussed online has the Lakers acquiring Kevin Love and center Kyle O'Quinn, while the Cavs would obtain Carmelo Anthony. To round out the three-team swap, the Knicks would receive a package that includes combo guard Jordan Clarkson, small forward Luol Deng, center Chris Andersen, center Tarik Black and Cleveland's first-round draft pick in 2018.
There are some problems with this rumored trade proposal. Kevin Love is playing extremely well for the Cavaliers this season (21.7 points and 10.8 rebounds per game on stellar 41 percent three-point shooting). It seems highly unlikely that the Cavs would move him now that he has finally found a comfort zone in Cleveland (he's also helped lead them to the best record in the Eastern Conference).
An even bigger obstacle is the legality of this hypothetical deal -- according to the ESPN NBA Trade Machine, New York would have too much incoming salary in this transaction, so it would not be allowed by NBA trade and salary cap rules. Based purely on basketball logic, this deal would seem to have a slim chance of happening, but when it comes to the NBA's Collective Bargaining Agreement, this swap has no chance of taking place.
NBA trade rumors involving star players come up all the time, but very few of those rumored deals are feasible. There is some circumstantial evidence that allows this rumored trade offer to make some sense on the surface, but in the final analysis, this three-team deal is simply a creation of the NBA rumor mill.
[Featured Image by Tony Dejak/AP Images]