Since the 2019 NBA offseason, the Cleveland Cavaliers have been informing everyone in the league that they have no intention of trading the face of the franchise, Kevin Love, before the 2020 February NBA trade deadline. Though he’s clearly an odd fit on their roster, the Cavaliers still view Love as the player that would lead them back to the NBA Finals and win their second NBA championship title. However, weeks after reports surfaced that the Cavaliers are planning to keep Love for the remainder of the 2019-20 NBA season, rumors are circulating that Cleveland is now open to moving not just the All-Star power forward but also veteran big man Tristan Thompson.
As they continue to struggle in the 2019-20 NBA season, rumors have started to heat up regarding the path that the Cavaliers are planning to take in the post-LeBron James era. According to Chris Fedor of the Cleveland Plain Dealer, there is currently a growing belief among players inside the Cavaliers’ locker room that the team is “trying to trade” Love and Thompson.
“For lottery-bound groups, this time of year is brutally tough because the primary decision-makers have to do what’s best long term. More than a few guys in that locker room sense the organization wanting to make a big shakeup, that the front office is ‘trying to trade Kevin and Tristan.’ While it’s their job to block out any noise and focus solely on basketball, they are also human. On top of that, losing is really hard, especially home blowouts against lousy teams.”
At this point, it would undeniably be best for the Cavaliers to undergo a full-scale rebuild. No matter how many times they insist that they want to keep their core players, the Cavaliers’ roster, as currently constructed, doesn’t have what it takes to contend for the NBA championship title or ever earn a playoff spot in the Eastern Conference. Also, keeping their veterans longer, specifically Love, could do hard more than good for the Cavaliers as it could have a negative effect on the development of their young players like Collin Sexton and Darius Garland.
Love and Thompson may have expressed their commitment to the Cavaliers on numerous occasions but inside their minds, they would definitely love to spend their prime years contending for the NBA championship title. If Love and Thompson are really available on the trading blocks, the Cavaliers must have already received plenty of inquiries for both veterans. Love would likely attract suitors who are in dire need of additional star power, while Thompson would gain interest from NBA teams who need a frontcourt boost.