Duke and U.S. national team coach Mike Krzyzewski told CBS Radio that he would trade Andrew Wiggins for Kevin Love if he ran the Cleveland Cavaliers, and there wouldn’t be “one second of hesitancy.”
His explanation has two parts: 1) Kevin Love is an exceptional player with a unique skill set, and 2) LeBron James is getting older and the Cavs can’t afford to waste entire seasons waiting for their young guys to develop.
Kevin Love is really, really good:
“I think there’s absolutely not one second of hesitancy, I’d trade for Kevin Love. That’s not saying anything about any of the other (players involved in the deal). Love’s an All-Star. He’s a double-double guy, but he’s a double-double guy that can spread the court. There aren’t many double-double guys, if any, who spread the court. He can go inside and outside. There may be a low-post player that gets you a double-double, but Love does it and you can do a lot of different things with him. I mean, I’ve coached him on two teams. No pun intended, but I love Kevin Love.”
LeBron James is getting older:
“You look at LeBron and you have the best player in the world. He’s 29. I’m not saying he’s at the end of his career, but he’s in the second half of his career, let’s put it that way. And in the first half of his career, he was becoming a great player. He was a great talent becoming a great player. That takes time. If Wiggins or Bennett are going to be great, it’s not going to happen right now. They’re great talents. LeBron is a great player right now. You do not want to waste any year of a great player’s career. Love is close to being that. He’s not as great a player as LeBron but he’s there. You know who Love is right now. They’re always developing but he’s a consistent outstanding player.”
The Wiggins-Love trade debate has been the dominant NBA talking point over the last few weeks. The Cavaliers had originally said they wouldn’t trade Wiggins, but changed their tune last week.
While Love is a great player, trading for him carries some risks. Right now Cleveland has the ability to keep LeBron, Kyrie Irving, and Wiggins and still have room to sign a maximum free agent in the summer of 2015 — when LaMarcus Aldridge, Marc Gasol, and may even Love will be available. Trading for Love would end that roster flexibility.
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