The Cleveland Cavaliers announced Tuesday morning that their power forward Kevin Love would be out for six weeks, after undergoing arthroscopic surgery on his left knee.
This leaves two questions.
What do the Cavaliers do now? Who will replace Love at the All-Star game?
Love has already missed a few games this season due to back spasms, but this knee injury is completely new. He began feeling pain in his knee during Saturday night’s win against the Denver Nuggets. However, it wasn’t known to the public until today.
Following the six week timeline, Love should be back around the end of March. That means he will only have two or three weeks to get readjusted before the playoffs start.
This is a huge loss for the Cavaliers because they are already thin at the power forward and center positions. They have already been dealing with an injury to one of their key players, J.R. Smith. He hasn’t played since late December when he suffered a fracture on his right thumb. He is scheduled to make his return around mid-March.
This means that two of the Cavaliers’ key players will only have little over a month to readjust themselves for the playoffs. They have been struggling since the calendar turned to 2017 with a record of 12-9, with Love playing in most of those games. Therefore, a change in the Eastern Conference standings could happen. The way the Washington Wizards and Boston Celtics are playing, they surely believe they can take that number one spot from Cleveland.
The likelihood of repeating this year is seeming to slip away. It might be time for David Griffin to make some moves that LeBron James has been saying for over a month now.
The Cavs are working on potential trades – with permission from ownership to increase payroll/cap, per @AmicoHoops.
— Legion Hoops (@LegionHoops) February 14, 2017
A tweak to the roster is almost a must now because players such as Kay Felder, Channing Frye, DeAndre Liggins, and Jordan McRae isn’t going to cut it.
Love will miss the All-Star Weekend, which is saddening because this is his first All-Star section since joining the Cavaliers in 2014. However, NBA commissioner Adam Silver will choose who will replace Love.
Bradley Beal has a strong case to be an All-Star. He is having a career year, averaging 22 points per game, 3 rebounds, and 4 assists. He is also shooting 47 percent from the field and 40 percent from three. He is also the second best player on the third seed in the East and hottest team since December. Including a couple 40 point games and one against the defending champs on national television.
— FanSportsClips (@FanSportsClips) February 7, 2017
There really isn’t anyone with numbers that stand-out, and are also winning, that would replace Kevin. The players with good numbers are on the bottom of the East, like Carmelo Anthony and Kristaps Porzingis. Therefore Beal has the best case as a replacement.