Would Love really bail on LeBron, Cleveland after one season?


Remember when the Timberwolves traded Kevin Love to the Cavaliers for Andrew Wiggins and more this summer? It feels like forever ago, but it's only been a couple of months. But now there is a report suggesting that Love's time playing alongside LeBron James and Kyrie Irving won't last much longer than a few more months.

Bulls.com reporter Sam Smith says Love is seriously considering opting out of his deal with the Cavs to join the Lakers.

"It’s not going to get as much discussion during the season, but one of the biggest issues for the Cavs is that both LeBron James and Kevin Love own opt outs after this season. LeBron James basically cannot afford to go anywhere after his return to Cleveland. But watch out for Love. Indications are he will seriously consider the opt out and has his eyes on a return to Los Angeles, where he attended college and where the Lakers long have had him on their free agent wish list."

Let's set the scare tactics aside for a second. Sporting News has a different view on Smith's report, suggesting that even if Love opts out of his contract in Cleveland, he won't necessarily pack his bags and leave.

Why? Because Love is due to make $16.7 in Cleveland next season. If he opts out, he could resign with the Cavs for a max deal that would pay him $18.6 million (thanks to a rising salary cap).

Finally, here's how Pro Basketball Talk views the rumor.

"Love opting out is nearly a forgone conclusion, but don’t mistake that near certainty with his intention to leave the Cavaliers. They still have the inside track on keeping him, and if they right themselves this season, their edge will only grow."

By the way, Love scored 22 points and hit six 3-pointers in Cleveland's impressive win over the New Orleans Pelicans on Monday night. Check out the game recap from NBA.com.

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