Latest posts by Colton Jones (see all)
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However, that doesn’t mean teams won’t be ringing Altman’s cell in pursuit of the five-time All-Star power forward.
Greg Swartz of Bleacher Report suggests the Portland Trail Blazers would be an ideal suitor for Love, writing the Blazers ship small forward Mo Harkless, center Meyers Leonard and their 2019 first-round draft pick — the 29th overall selection — in exchange for Love, who would provide All-Star point guard Damian Lillard another much-needed weapon to play alongside in addition to C.J. McCollum.
“Lillard’s spectacular postseason performance reinforced two previous beliefs,” Swartz writes.
“First, he’s a superstar and among the best guards in the NBA. Second, defenses will plan their attacks around stopping him, and the Blazers will need someone besides C.J. McCollum to turn to for offense.”
This is where acquiring Love would come into play, according to Swartz.
“Enter Love, who should be happy to move off a rebuilding Cavaliers team and return to his home area of Lake Oswego, Oregon,” he writes. “Given Love’s injury history and juicy remaining contract (four years, $120.4 million), the Blazers won’t have to give up McCollum or a great deal of assets.
“Simply including the expiring contracts of Harkless and Leonard, along with their late first-round pick this season, should do.”
Swartz is of the belief Love will continue to be a productive player, despite missing more than 50 games last season after undergoing toe surgery in November.
“Is Love still productive when healthy? His 17.0 points and 10.9 rebounds in just 27.2 minutes per game this season suggest so,” Swartz writes. “Can he be the third-best player on a championship team? Again, check. Will his presence open the floor and create even more driving lanes for Lillard and McCollum? Absolutely.
“For Lillard and the Blazers, a trade for Love is well worth the risk.”