One team in the Eastern Conference could prevent the Miami Heat from signing recently bought-out forward Kevin Love.
The NBA trade deadline has passed, but there are still some options for teams to explore on the buyout market. While Russell Westbrook is the big name available, a new player has entered free agency in the form of Cleveland Cavaliers forward Kevin Love. The team that has been linked to Love is the Miami Heat, but could there be a team that could block them from signing the former NBA champion and five-time All-Star?
According to ESPN senior NBA insider Adrian Wojnarowski, the Cavaliers completed their contract buyout of Love. Wojnarowski says that while the Heat are considered the frontrunners, Love is expected to speak with the Philadelphia 76ers before making a decision.
Kevin Love to speak with 76ers before making decision
The Heat currently sit in seventh place in the Eastern Conference as of Saturday morning, a full 10 games behind the Boston Celtics for first-place. Meanwhile, the 76ers are in third-place, just three games back of first. Bringing in Love would give Philadelphia some additional star power on their roster, but would he make an impact for team? As in, would he play meaningful minutes?
Love had been with the Cavaliers since the 2014-15 season, the year in which LeBron James made his return to Cleveland. After winning an NBA title in 2016 and making the All-Star team in 2017 and 2018, Love had been phased out of the starting lineup in recent years. Last year, Love played in 74 games, but started in just four. In the 2022-23 campaign, he played in 41 games and started in just three. In fact, Love didn’t play in Cleveland’s previous 12 games entering All-Star weekend.
This season, Love averaged 8.5 points and 6.8 rebounds while shooting 38.9-percent from the field and 35.4-percent from the three-point line.
Expect Love to make his decision after he speaks with the 76ers. Would he opt to sign with Philadelphia, or will he choose the frontrunner in the Heat?