According to Charania, league sources have said Love would prefer a move to a contending team. Charania also reiterated what ESPN reported on Friday, indicating that the Cavs have been open to engaging in discussions with teams about a potential trade involving Love.
Windhorst, meanwhile, stated on his podcast that he thinks Cleveland’s phone lines “were always open” on Love, adding that the five-time All-Star seems “clearly unhappy” with the Cavs (hat tip to RealGM). Love expressed frustration over the weekend with the team’s struggles, and Windhorst suggests that the big man’s relationship with first-year head coach John Beilein may have accelerated the Cavs’ timeline for a trade.
The Cavs got off to a solid start this season under Beilein, winning four of their first nine games. Since then, they’ve dropped 12 of 13, and many of those losses have been blowouts. The team was hammered by 47 points in Philadelphia on Saturday.
After recording 18.3 PPG and 13.4 RPG on 48.1% shooting in Cleveland’s first nine games, Love has averages of 13.9 PPG and 7.6 RPG on 39.6% since then, and has battled a back injury.
While Love still has star-level upside, potential trade partners will be wary of his recent injury history (he hasn’t played more than 60 games in a season since 2015/16) and of his contract, which still has three years and $91MM+ left on it after this season.