Apr 11, 2014; Milwaukee, WI, USA; Cleveland Cavaliers guard Kyrie Irving (2) drives for a shot during the first quarter against the Milwaukee Bucks at BMO Harris Bradley Center. Mandatory Credit: Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports

Timberwolves Trade Rumors: Cavs making play for Kevin Love?


Alas, the Love-to-Cleveland rumors have begun.

As soon as the Cavaliers beat the long odds to win Tuesday’s NBA Draft Lottery, we knew that Cleveland would be the hot new potential destination for the Wolves to ship their superstar. (Seriously, when has Cleveland been a hot, new destination for anything?) Also, they apparently are dilusional about how this trade would go down.

While the reunion of Uncle Drew and Wes would be an epic pairing, it’s difficult to find a trade offer that Cleveland could put together that would entice Flip Saunders to pull the trigger. Of course, it’s even tougher to imagine Love re-signing in Cleveland in the summer of 2015, but that’s another matter.

The only real asset that Cleveland possesses is the #1 overall pick. It’s been rumored that the Wolves would covet Kansas wing Andrew Wiggins in the top spot to fill the gaping hole that has been their starting 3-spot for, well, pretty much since Latrell Sprewell was able to feed his family.

The perspective here, of course, is that Wiggins is vastly overrated and will be a marginal at-best NBA contributor for at least his first couple of seasons, and is nowhere near where a number of teams seem to see him. There are some good anonymous quotes over at Grantland from various NBA scouts and executives. Follow the link and you’ll see, among other statements:

Don’t trust his shot or his ball skills. Can’t go left….He can be your third-best player, but not your best…He will be lost in an NBA half-court offense. He is great in transition, but he has no ball skills. All right hand, no idea what to do without the ball. He struggles with confidence. He actually reminds me more of Gerald Green than any of these studs he’s compared to.”

Not what teams should be looking for in a number one overall pick in an allegedly deep draft class. Joel Embiid should be the clear number one pick. Use statistical prediction models, traditional scouting methods, his individual workouts, measurements…it doesn’t matter. Throw it all together and you have a historical talent.

The back injury that cut his season at Kansas short appears to largely be a non-issue at this point, but even if it was a concern, I’m not sure that I’d be able to pass on the potential and immediate impact that Embiid will surely have at the professional level.

Now, should the Wolves move Love to the Cavs? They almost certainly should not, and while the number one pick is enticing, what else would they get from the Cavs? Bill Simmons surmises that Minnesota would receive the top pick, Anthony Bennett (last year’s #1 overall pick), and an unprotected first round pick in 2015. If Bennett were any good, that would be a decent yet not great haul.

Simmons also suggests that the Wolves could turn around and flip the #1 pick to Philadelphia for picks #3 and #10. Now, if I could turn Love into #3, #10, Anthony Bennett, and an unprotected first-rounder from the Cavs, I’d think about it. Especially if Saunders is indeed enamored with Wiggins, who would surely be there at #3. The Wolves could then pick at #10 and #13, or package them in a trade to move up or acquire a veteran player.

I also don’t think that Philadelphia would make that trade, unless the savvy Sam Hinkie happens to be in love with the idea of pairing Nerlens Noel (coming back this year from knee surgery) and Emiid in the paint, which would be a terrifying duo.

Anyways, we’ve gone down a never-ending rabbit hole of trades contingent on any number of trades happening prior to these other trades taking place. It comes down to this: if you can get the number one overall pick for a player that you believe is a once-in-a-generation, transformational talent, you have to consider making it happen. Of course, I’m terrified that Saunders would draft Wiggins at #1, and that would ruin everything.

All things considered, it’s a trade that if on the table, should be considered. Ultimately, I’m not sure I could pull the trigger. We’ll take a look at a variety of potential trade scenarios from teams around the league as we move forward, but thus far this is really the only intriguing possibility that’s been rumored to eventually be on the table.

Tags: Kevin Love Minnesota Timberwolves NBA NBA Draft

  • Dave Cox

    Why would the Cavs trade for Kevin Love for 1 year of service. He is not going to sign with the Wolves or the Cavs after this year, and thus has diminished value to both franchises. David Griffith was born but it wasn’t yesterday (at least I hope not).

    • JOHN

      My trade proposal gives the Cavs a +10 game. Rumors also say Irving is on his way out after next year. Cavs will only be a farm team for the bigger markets. This trade will place the Cavs in the top 5 in the east next year. Should the Heat be in a shake up. A chance to go all the way..

      • Dave Cox

        No way to build a team – any team, regardless of market size, 2015 would be a disaster for the Cavs for a 10+ game swing???
        No K Love, or Deon, or Anthony Bennett or the #1 pick…..crazy.
        Stay with the plan and build through the draft, AB will brake out.

        • JOHN

          Lol… you are drunk on the kool-aid.

      • Dan Contento

        In 6 years as a Timberwolve, Kevin Love has led his team to exactly ZERO playoff appearances. During that time, his teams have averaged 25 wins per year and have not had even 1 winning season. Conversely, in 12 seasons with Minnesota, Kevin Garnett led them to the playoffs 8 times. Love puts up good numbers, but does not make those around him better and does not elevate his team. Aren’t these the same criticisms we hear about Kyrie? This guy is not going to help Cleveland to the playoffs and I would definitely NOT give up a number one pick for him.

  • michael

    Kyrie for klove$?

  • JOHN

    Kevin Love and Kevin Martin and last 2 of Minnesota’s second round picks for luio Deng(expiring), Anthony Bennet, Dion Waiters and #1 pick. Then draft Wiggins(1) and Payne(13). Payne should develop into a real good P.F. and Wiggens into the shooting guard they so desperately need. Anthony may develop into a decent P.F..