Will The Real Kevin Love Please Stand Up?
When LeBron returned, we all had our own thoughts and opinions regarding the rumors on the “Andrew Wiggins for Kevin Love” trade rumors. Many thought that it would be stupid to trade a young talent like Wiggins for a player most considered overrated, Kevin Love. Yet, the deal went down and the “Big Three” was formed in Cleveland.
I’m not here to call the guy overrated, or even say he is just playing terribly, but anyone can see his inconsistency. Last night’s game is more proof.
I like Kevin Love, and truly do think he is a top 3 PF when healthy, yet what irritated me most was seeing how much better another dominant PF, like LaMarcus Aldridge, is over Kevin Love this season. Although Love is the third option on a team with other superstars in LeBron and Kyrie (while LA’s role can be the 1st or 2nd option game-to-game), there is still something to be had with Love.
The former Timberwolve’s game is so unique, and there is truly many things that separate him from other players when he is playing well.
He is a phenomenal rebounder, low post scorer and of course outlet passer. Yet, the one key part of his game that has struggled all season, is his ability to space the floor with the three. Love’s 3PT % is roughly 33%, which is far from terrible, yet still right around 30% down from his career 36% average. There are games when he looks completely comfortable shooting, yet others when he just downright looks like he doesn’t want to.
Love is also a dreadful defender, and is much worse on defense than any of us could ever have thought. Love seemingly has no idea not only how to defend and play help defense, but also use his 6’11 body to simply just defend layups (Which he tends to give up frequently). Frankly, if Love was a great defender it would be hard to pile on him, yet the sad fact is he isn’t (and likely never will be) a good defender.
Love is far from having a terrible season. He is still putting up averages of 17.1 PPG, 10.3 RPG and 2.3 APG. (All while being the third option mind you). The inconsistency is the only issue. If the Cavs could get the consistent and great Kevin Love night in and night out, the Cavs would be more than better off. They could finally perform as one of the truly elite teams in the NBA today.