The psychological burden of helping the Cleveland Cavaliers rebuild has apparently taken a toll on veteran Kevin Love.
According to a recent report, the veteran forward once called the process a “mindf—.”
“Following one of the games last season, another time when Love let his frustration show, he told cleveland.com it was a ‘mindf—‘ being in this arduous rebuild following four straight years of chasing titles Rebuilds aren’t easy,” wrote Fedor. “Not everyone can handle them emotionally Young players take time to mature. Love doesn’t seem happy. Even [head coach J.B.] Bickerstaff, who is clearly on board with the plan, looks worn down.”
In the Monday night loss to the Toronto Raptors, Love’s blunder during an inbounds pass led to a quick 3-pointer by the Raptors, who went on to win, 112-96.
Love came to the Cavaliers in a 2014 deal with the Minnesota Timberwolves after having gone through six seasons of poor team play. Over the next four years, the Cavaliers reached the NBA Finals and captured the NBA championship in 2016.
That run ended in 2018 when LeBron James signed with the Los Angeles Lakers, with the Cavaliers still struggling just to get out of the league’s basement.
Love, whose mental health focus has become prominent in recent years, also had to deal with major injuries that limited him to 22 games during the 2018-19 campaign. He’s played in just 18 games so far this season.
Frustration was obviously evident in Love’s actions on Monday night, though his presence as a high-priced veteran is supposed to represent leadership for the young Cavs team.
Trading Love has long been considered by the Cavaliers, but his trade value is seen as minimal, largely due to his injury history and the remaining amount of money left on his massive contract.
For now, the hope is that Love can simply focus on trying to regularly put up double-double performances that would help the Cavaliers’ chances of winning.