With the Boston Celtics sitting atop the NBA with the best record in the league, one of the team’s needs prior to the NBA Trade Deadline was big man depth and insurance behind Robert Williams and Al Horford.
Cleveland Cavaliers veteran center Kevin Love would’ve been perfect in that role, except there was no way the team were going to trade for him given his current contract, which Love is in the final year of a $120 million, four-year deal.
Enter the buyout market.
Celtics will finally have a shot at Kevin Love, if they want him
According to NBA.com and various other outlets, the five-time All-Star has discussed the possibility of a contract buyout from the Cavaliers after being buried deep in the rotation.
In fact, Love hasn’t played in the last 12 games for a Cavs team right in the mix of the Eastern Conference playoff face. The Cavs are also a team the Celtics have had some trouble with this season mostly due to their front court presence.
In averaging just 8.5 points and 6.8 rebounds, Love’s best years are obviously behind him, but he is a versatile big who can obviously rebound and knock down the three. Perfect for the Celtics, but other teams out there like the Golden State Warriors, Miami Heat and Los Angeles Lakers are expected to go after Love when and if that buyout happens.
Boston Celtics addressed their need at big, why Kevin Love?
Celtics president of basketball operations Brad Stevens did address that need in acquiring Mike Muscala from the Oklahoma City Thunder. As a big man who can stretch the floor, Muscala does fit that need, but if an opportunity presented itself for the team to add a championship experienced big, why not go for it.
Want your voice heard? Join the Chowder And Champions team!
Stevens and the Celtics have had their eyes on Love in the past and on a veteran’s, minimum could have him as a bargain going down the stretch and into the playoffs. Again, with Muscala and Luke Kornet putting in valuable minutes behind Horford and Robert Williams, the Celtics do seem fine.
In fact, most fans would rather the team add a wing to the bench depth rather another big, but the injury history of Williams and the age of Horford are still concerns.
This is where Stevens could see an opportunity to add a player like Love a value. In contrast, Love could steer away from the Celtics if he doesn’t see an opportunity to get more minutes. So, if Stevens and the Celtics have interest, they would have to convince Love he would be a part of a rotation of Williams, Horford, and Love. That additional veteran presence could help put the Celtics over the top in the playoffs.
While Kevin Love finally joining the Celtics is unlikely at this point, the team should give it some though. As good as Kornet and Muscala has been, no one could argue that Love wouldn’t be a good upgrade even at 34 years old (which by the way is younger than Horford).