Kevin Love Trade Rumors: Blazers as PF's Favored Team 'Is Not Necessarily True'

Scott Polacek@@ScottPolacekFeatured ColumnistDecember 12, 2019

Cleveland Cavaliers' Kevin Love reacts after scoring a basket during the first half of an NBA basketball game against the Philadelphia 76ers, Saturday, Dec. 7, 2019, in Philadelphia. (AP Photo/Matt Slocum)
Matt Slocum/Associated Press

Cleveland Cavaliers forward Kevin Love may not be traded to the Portland Trail Blazers after all. 

According to Dwight Jaynes of NBC Sports Northwest, those close to Love believe it "is not necessarily true" that the Trail Blazers are favored to land him via trade despite how often Portland is mentioned as a potential destination.

Jaynes pointed to his average salary of $30.1 million over the next three seasons and his recent injury history as possible concerns from Portland's perspective.

This comes after Kevin O'Connor of The Ringer reported "Love would prefer to play for his hometown Portland Trail Blazers."

O'Connor suggested it makes sense for Portland to pursue the UCLA product because it needs another scorer alongside Damian Lillard and CJ McCollum and has dealt with a number of serious injuries to Rodney Hood, Jusuf Nurkic and Zach Collins.

That leaves plenty of holes in a frontcourt that is largely just Hassan Whiteside, Skal Labissiere and veteran Carmelo Anthony at this point.

The Trail Blazers reached the Western Conference Finals last season but are one of the league's biggest disappointments to this point. They are out of the playoff picture at 10-15 and are in the middle of an injury-riddled campaign that leaves their long-term prospects in jeopardy.

Love could help turn things around as a five-time All-Star who is still a double-double threat and capable of extending his game beyond the three-point line. He is averaging 15.7 points, 10.5 rebounds per game while shooting 35.4 percent from deep.

As for Cleveland, Love is one of the last connections to 2016 championship team that also featured LeBron James and Kyrie Irving, but it is clearly in rebuilding mode and could restock in assets with a trade.