NBA Rumors: Kevin Love Wanted to Play With Damian Lillard Over LeBron James

Published 08/29/2021, 1:56 AM EDT
Aug. 12, 2012 – London, England, United Kingdom – The ‘Dream Team,’ including (L-R) KEVIN LOVE, LEBRON JAMES, and KEVIN DURANT, celebrates after winning the gold medal basketball game against Spain during the 2012 London Summer Olympics. (Credit Image: �� Mark Makela) (Photo by Mark Makela/Corbis via Getty Images)


Kevin Love was a part of the famous 2016 Cavaliers along with LeBron James. They came back from a 3-1 deficit in the NBA finals and did the impossible. But since then, things have not gone Love’s way.

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Injuries have not been kind to Kevin. Because of constant injuries, there has been a clear drop in his productivity. Likewise, with the Cavaliers trying to rebuild, they have offered him a buyout. However, Love has shown no interest in taking that route.

Recent reports now show that Love wanted to be traded to the Trailblazers and play with Lillard rather than sign with another team.

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Love overlooks LeBron James?

Recently, Cleveland let go of Larry Nance Jr, sending him to Portland. Now, according to a NBA GM, Love wanted to be traded to the Trailblazers instead if Nance Jr. He also mentioned that Cleveland are in a no-win situation when it comes to Love.

May 25, 2021; Phoenix, Arizona, USA; Los Angeles Lakers guard LeBron James (23) reacts against the Phoenix Suns during the first half in game two of the first round of the 2021 NBA Playoffs at Phoenix Suns Arena. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Furthermore, he said that there have been several cases where the Cavs have been in this situation. With two years remaining on his contract and him willing to take a trade, it would look like Love wants out. But the situation is lot more complicated.

Love made it clear that he has no intentions of getting to a buyout agreement. If he does, it would allow him to sign with any team, but the money is no guarantee. With his recent desires for a trade, Love made it clear that he wishes to play with Damian Lillard.

May 25, 2021; Phoenix, Arizona, USA; Los Angeles Lakers forward LeBron James (23) reacts against the Phoenix Suns during the second half in game two of the first round of the 2021 NBA Playoffs at Phoenix Suns Arena. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports | Courtesy: Reuters

The duo spent some time while playing for Team USA. But before the Olympics, Love backed out of playing due to his injury. Now, looking at the current situation, does Love really want to play with Lillard over LeBron James, or does money determine where he lands?

Kevin Love chasing the bag?

Cleveland wants to let go of Kevin Love and add in another player. However, Kevin has refused to agree to a buyout with them. If he does, he could potentially put himself in a great position to win. Love could join former teammate LeBron James with the Lakers or even Brooklyn.

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The main issue, however, is that he will receive a lot less money. Currently, Love is being paid like a star as he will receive $60 million in these two years. With a trade, his salary will not be affected, but a buyout would change things.

Aug. 12, 2012 – London, England, United Kingdom – Members of team USA, the ‘Dream Team,’ (L-R) JAMES HARDEN, LEBRON JAMES, CHRIS PAUL, ANTHONY DAVIS, RUSSELL WESTBROOK, and KEVIN LOVE confer on the bench during the gold medal basketball game against Spain during the 2012 London Summer Olympics. (Credit Image: �� Mark Makela) (Photo by Mark Makela/Corbis via Getty Images)

With him having the freedom to sign with anyone, his recent struggles will not draw in the money he is receiving through his current contract. Love averaged just 12 points last season while playing a career-low 25 minutes per game. Hence, his value has gone down substantially.

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It appears that Love wants to secure his money rather than look to win. Do you agree with us? Let us know in the comments below.

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Anuj Talwalkar

268 articles

Anuj Talwalkar is an NBA writer at EssentiallySports. He is a student studying at NM College in Mumbai, aspiring to pursue sports management to follow his love for sports. Anuj started following the NBA last year, and he loves to combine his passion for writing with his understanding of basketball.

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