No Love lost in Cleveland

January 24, 2018
From left : Cleveland Cavaliers players LeBron James, Isaiah Thomas, Kevin Love, JR Smith and Jae Crowder.

 

Cleveland's drama club is acting up again. Frustrated by their recent poor play in a season when their NBA title hopes seem to be slipping away, the Cavaliers held an emotional pre-practice meeting on Monday in hopes of clearing the air.

They've lost 10 of 14 and dropped to third in the Eastern Conference behind Boston and Toronto. With an embarrassing defeat to Oklahoma City on national TV still lingering, the Cavs decided it was time to address their troubled state before leaving for yesterday's game at San Antonio.

"We aired any grievances we had and we're going to move forward," said center Kevin Love, who regretted that the meeting was leaked publicly. "Hopefully, we'll be better for it, we have been in the past."

Chaos is nothing new for the Cavaliers, who have had similar blow-ups in recent years, yet managed to overcome any differences and went to the finals the past three years.

Love has been in the middle of controversy before, and after he missed two days with an illness, it was presumed he was involved in Monday's discussion.

"Did I feel like a target?" he said at yesterday's shootaround. "I think everybody, most people, were a target. We're trying to figure this thing out. People hold themselves to a very high standard on this team and we're a team that can compete at the highest level. So, for us, it's not about me.

"I'm not going to make it about myself. I'm sure with other guys, it's the same thing. The biggest thing is moving forward. For me, the thing I've always done is kept my mouth shut, I continue to work hard and try to do best for the Cavs. That's all I can do tonight and moving forward these last 35, 40 games and overall just try to help this team."

 

LATEST TURBULENCE

 

While Love wants to move on from the team's latest turbulence, there may be some unresolved issues.

When the team arrived at San Antonio's AT&T Center, Love was the first player off the bus and he walked into the arena by himself wearing headphones and carrying a coffee cup. His teammates trailed in behind him.

Although Love is averaging 18.6 points and 9.4 rebounds, there always seems to be a sense that he should be doing more. He's been the scapegoat before, so the latest uproar surrounding the team doesn't surprise him.

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