It was a dismal Game 5 for Kevin Love and the Cleveland Cavaliers ended up losing to the Golden State Warriors. Now leaving the NBA Finals 2017 behind and looking forward to next season, chances are the Cavs will again meet the Warriors for another shot on the Larry O'Brien Trophy. So what need to be done to ensure a win?
One word lights up immediately - trade, and according to Fox Sports the Cavs have multiple options to revamp its lineup with the end of getting a more favorable narrative come Season 2017-18. Specifically, if the plan is to stop the GSW crew on their tracks then the Cleveland front office will need to consider shipping out a number of key players.
In this respect, Fox Sports offered a number of interesting trade scenarios that mostly involve Love and in one instance Kyrie Irving.
The report said Cleveland can use Irving to convince the Los Angeles Clippers to send starting guard Chris Paul. To sweeten the deal, the Cavs can include Edy Tavares to the package and in exchange they'd get a veteran playmaker that can make things happen the way the Cavaliers want to be.
But truth to be told, such a deal will lead to the loss of a go-to player in Irving, the same man who buried 40 points in Game 4 of the just concluded NBA Finals, and in fact the only game won by Cleveland. And not to mention that Irving scored when it really mattered, true to his marquee of clutch player, which is an element present in all champion team.
If losing Irving seems unthinkable for the Cavs then Love it has to be. Fox Sports said Cleveland putting Love on the trading market will potentially give them access on three equally talented players. But on taking that route, there will be pros and cons to consider.
Say Love is swapped for DeMarcus Cousins of the New Orleans Pelicans, the Cavs will surely gain a talent with proven ball handling wizardry and like Love can snipe from the perimeter with impressive marksmanship. But Cousins is a liability in the defense department that will only become more apparent when the Cavaliers face off again with the Warriors.
Cousins trying to stop Kevin Durant all by himself is unlikely to work, meaning LeBron James will need to help out, and meaning again King James will likely become overstretched, which in the end is bad news for the Cavaliers.
The Cavaliers can also explore the possibility of luring way Carmelo Anthony from the New York Knicks but Fox Sports said this is only beneficial if Melo will join the Cavs at a bargain price. The report said sending Love to the Knicks for Anthony is too high a price to pay for Cleveland.
More exciting is the prospect of convincing Paul George of the Indiana Pacers to move to Ohio. "The Cavs would be sacrificing a little bit of size for a genuine All-NBA forward who can create his own shot, knock down 3s and guard Kevin Durant for stretches of time," the Fox Sports report said in highlighting how exactly Cleveland will benefit from George.
However, the same report warned that George adjusting with the Cavaliers could take some time and if it takes too long the benefits mentioned above could be nullified.
And one thing to note, all these scenarios playing out in favor of the Cavaliers will only lead to good returns if LeBron James will stay with Cleveland. According to Bleacher Report, the whispers are getting stronger that James may want to win an NBA ring wearing a different jersey, as early as next year, which is another story to tell.