He told the station:
“I think where maybe he got away with some stuff not playing defence on our team, I’m not sure that’s how it’s going to work in Cleveland. I would guess they’re going to ask him to play more defence and he’s foul prone.”
Kevin Love is not foul-prone. He’s exceptionally foul-averse.
Among players who played at least 30 minutes per game last year, Love committed the 11th-fewest fouls per game in the league. He averaged a measly 1.8 fouls per game. Among power forwards, Love had the lowest foul rate in the league. He never fouled out of a game in 2013-14.
It’s perfectly fair to poke holes in Love’s game, especially when it comes to defence. But saying Kevin Love fouls a lot is one of the single most incorrect things you could say about Kevin Love.
Taylor wasn’t done. He also told ESPN radio:
“I question Kevin if this is going to be the best deal for him because I think he’s going to be the third player on the team. I don’t think he’s going to get a lot of credit if they do really well. I think he’ll get blame if they don’t do well. He’s around a couple guys that are awful good.”
Taylor’s implication is that Kyrie Irving is better than Love (or at least people think he’s better than Kevin Love?). No one thinks Irving is anywhere close to the player Love is.
It’d be much easier to view Taylor’s comments as something other than sour grapes if his arguments had some degree of truth. But since he’s just throwing stuff out there, all the criticism he’s getting for ripping Love seems justified.
It’s also worth mentioning that Taylor and Minnesota’s refusal to give Love a maximum five-year contract extension in 2012 is one of the big reasons he forced a trade to Cleveland in the first place.
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