The Cavs held a meeting before practice Tuesday to clear the air following Monday’s blowout loss to the Warriors, and Kevin Love had a major bounce-back performance Wednesday, posting 17 points and a whopping 18 rebounds in 31 minutes as the Cavaliers rolled to victory over the Nets, as Dave McMenamin of ESPN.com details. It came on the heels of a miserable performance Monday in which he had only three points and six rebounds, and Love said Wednesday that he didn’t intend for a comment he made following the Warriors game in which he appeared to call out LeBron James to be perceived as a shot at the four-time MVP, McMenamin notes.
“All I meant was that LeBron is our leader and we follow him at the end of the day,” Love said. “We all got to be better for each other, him, our fans, our organization, each and every player on this team, our coaches.”
James said he believes Love’s contention that he didn’t mean to be critical, according to McMenamin, but the fallout from Monday’s wake-up call of a loss remains. See more:
- Love was at a loss for words after Monday’s game when asked about what his role on the team is, and he’s not an easy fit on the Cavs roster, argues Tim Bontemps of The Washington Post. Cleveland already has fellow power forward Tristan Thompson, who, like Love, is just starting a five-year deal, and James, who also excels at power forward, as Bontemps points out.
- David Blatt‘s continued employment as coach of the Cavs depends largely on how well Love performs down the stretch this season, opines Brian Windhorst of ESPN.com.
- James isn’t as singularly dominant as he once was and his teammates aren’t giving him the on-court support he needs, contends Kevin Ding of Bleacher Report, who believes James simply isn’t as relevant on the NBA landscape as he has been in the past. Still, a disappearance from center stage would suit James just fine, he said Wednesday, as McMenamin relays in his story. “I actually wish they continue to forget about us. Completely forget about us,” James said. “For the first time in my career I could fly under the radar. For us, we as a basketball team, we just got to go out and prove it to ourselves. It’s not about what everybody else thinks. We need to be with each other and get better every night. I think tonight it was very easy to look each other in the face and know that we got better out there.”