Since LeBron James’ departure from the team in the summer of 2018, the Cleveland Cavaliers have been informing everyone in the league that they have no intention of trading All-Star power forward Kevin Love and undergoing a full-scale rebuild. Unfortunately, under Love’s leadership, the Cavaliers went from being a legitimate title contender to one of the worst NBA teams in the Eastern Conference. Cavaliers fans may hate to admit it, but some analysts believe that it will only be a matter of time before Cleveland finally considers taking a different route.
According to Zach Buckley of Bleacher Report, winning the NBA draft lottery could make the Cavaliers decide to part ways with Love in the 2020 NBA offseason. If they get the No. 1 pick in the 2020 NBA Draft, Buckley suggested that the Cavaliers may consider trading Love to the Golden State Warriors in exchange for Andrew Wiggins and a 2021 second-round pick.
“Wiggins and Love are both overpaid, but at least Wiggins is young, more athletic and an easier fit with this roster. He’s a good enough scorer to ease the burden on Collin Sexton, Darius Garland and Kevin Porter Jr., but it would be easy to slash his chances whenever the youngsters are ready for more. Plus, if Cleveland goes big with the first pick (James Wiseman?) or decides Andre Drummond is a keeper, Love would get squeezed off this roster.”
Though it wouldn’t give them immediate salary cap relief, the potential deal would enable the Cavaliers to acquire assets that could help them speed up the rebuilding process. Wiggins is only 25 and still fits the timeline of the Cavaliers’ young core of Collin Sexton, Darius Garland, and Kevin Porter Jr. Love’s departure likely wouldn’t hurt the Cavaliers’ frontcourt — even if they also lose Tristan Thompson and Andre Drummond in the 2020 NBA free agency. Using the No. 1 pick in the 2020 NBA Draft, the Cavaliers could fill the void in their frontcourt by drafting young and promising big man James Wiseman.
The potential deal could be very beneficial for Love and the Warriors. Instead of using his prime years mentoring young players on a rebuilding team, being traded to the Warriors would give Love the opportunity to contend for the NBA championship title once again. Meanwhile, the acquisition of Love would enable the Warriors to acquire a fourth superstar that would help Stephen Curry, Klay Thompson, and Draymond Green revive their dynasty.
After four consecutive years of facing them in the NBA Finals, Love must be already familiar with how Curry, Thompson, and Green move on the court. With his ability to excel in an off-ball capacity, Love likely wouldn’t have a hard time making himself fit with Coach Steve Kerr’s system.