After the most successful season in franchise history, it sounds like the Cleveland Cavaliers core will remain intact for their title defense.
A lot of speculation has surrounded Kevin Love throughout his tenure with the Cavs. His match up issues against the Golden State Warriors have been well documented, but the reality is that he helps in a significant way against 28 out of 29 other teams and the team found a way to defeat the team that he doesn't match up well against. He also was really good in Game 7, even late when the he had to guard Stephen Curry one-on-one late.
Wednesday morning on ESPN's Mike and Mike, Cavs coach Tyronn Lue expressed extreme confidence that Kevin Love will not be moved this summer. Here's his quote as transcribed by Fox Sports:
Oh he's going to be here. I mean, without Kevin Love, we wouldn't have gotten to the Finals. You know, he had a great series against Detroit, a great series against Atlanta, a great series against Toronto. You know, with the way Golden State plays, and the positions they put you in, it was just a tough series. It's the same with Channing Frye. He did a great job of getting us to that point, but it's a tough series for him to play in because they play small, and it was tough for us matchup-wise. But Kevin Love was great for us all season long. Kyrie missed 30 games this season, and Kevin and LeBron carried this team the first 30 games of the season. Then throughout the playoffs, those first three rounds, he was big. Then in Game 7, after hearing all the negative talk, he comes into Game 7, has 14 rebounds, a big stop on Steph Curry at the end of the game. So Kevin Love is going to be here, we want him here, and he's a big part of what we want to do going forward.
I would expect David Griffin to use whatever resources and assets possible this summer to try to add more wing depth for the Cavs, so they can better combat a team like the Warriors. But the impact Love had on the Cavs this season overall is hard to deny. As LeBron James ages, it'll be on both Kyrie Irving and Kevin Love to shoulder a larger and larger load moving forward.