After undergoing an arthroscopic surgery, Kevin Love is expected to play in the Cleveland Cavaliers’ upcoming four-game road trip. The 28-year-old All-Star forward expressed his excitement on his nearing return but is also worried that he could ruin the team’s rhythm.
“I think it will be pretty easy for me to come back in, and I just don’t want to mess up any of the rhythm these guys have,” Love told reporters Wednesday. Kevin Love already missed 13 games since undergoing a surgery to remove “loose bodies” in his left knee last month. Since he was sidelined, the Cavaliers are 7-6 and has undeniably felt his absence on both ends of the floor. Love is currently playing his best season so far since joining the Cavaliers, averaging 20 points and 11.1 rebounds.
The Cavaliers need all their “Big Three” healthy if they want to repeat as NBA champions. As of now, Cleveland remains as the No. 1 seed in the Eastern Conference but just one win ahead of the Boston Celtics. Love has already been in the same situation during his first season with the Cavaliers.
Recent injury reminded Kevin Love of 2015 NBA playoffs
His shoulder injury kept him out for most of the games in the 2015 NBA playoffs. He’s also unable to help the Cavaliers battle against the Golden State Warriors. Fortunately, this time, he only missed regular season games and is expected to be 100% healthy in the upcoming postseason.
“That was the hardest part about being out during that first year, that first run,” Love said. “We went to six games in the Finals, but just knowing there were certain places I could help — help space the floor, rebound both ends of the floor. It’s no different than right now. It’s just regular season and knowing that I can help out definitely from a rebounding perspective, defensively I can help out, offensively it just gives us another weapon. I’ve always said we’re a lot better when we’re healthy.”
Recently, Love’s Instagram post created confusion among fans in which coach Tyronn Lue quickly addressed. Lue revealed that Love was only messing up and still not expected to play on Thursday when the Cavaliers faced the Utah Jazz.
“Whenever the medical staff clears him, he’ll be ready to go,” Lue said. “He reacted well. After the practice today he said he felt good. Hopefully, continue to keep progressing as well. That’s a good sign for us.”
After the 3-on-3 drills earlier in the week, Kevin Love already participated in the team’s practice on Wednesday. He is expected to play when the Cavaliers visit the Los Angeles Clippers on Saturday.
Photo courtesy: Keith Allison/Wikimedia Commons