The Cleveland Cavaliers have no intention of trading Kevin Love, according to Cleveland.com's Chris Fedor.
The star is being viewed as a trade asset for the rebuilding Cavs, yet Fedor reports that the team sees him as a "cornerstone", something underpinned by their signing him to a four-year, $120 million deal in the summer.
Per The New York Times' Marc Stein, it is believed that Love could be made available for the right price, while Cavaliers head coach Larry Drew has implied that anything could happen.
PREVIOUSLY: KEVIN LOVE CAN SEE HIMSELF GETTING TRADED
"Would I be surprised? As far as trades are concerned, I understand the nature of this business. Anybody can be traded," Drew was quoted as saying. "I've been in this league long enough where I've seen that happen. I think any deal that makes sense for any team, sure, they'll be willing to pull the trigger. But that's just the nature of our business.
"Around this time is always an exciting time because you start hearing names floating around, all the possibilities and the probables and the what-ifs and 99 percent of the time none of it happens. Trade deadline time is always, as a player you get a little antsy.
"When I played, I got a little antsy because there was always the possibility. That's just how the business is, that deadline, people get excited, things start floating around and that's just how it is."
Fedor, however, claims that the Cavs want Love to remain with them while they rebuild, and the suggestion is that they want to build the team around the forward.
"Ultimately, they view Love as a cornerstone of the post-LeBron James era," he writes. "They signed him to a four-year extension this off-season in part to protect their asset. But they also wanted him to be with them during this strenuous rebuild, understanding how difficult it is to acquire an All-Star, especially in a city that hasn't historically been a hotbed for free agents."
The Cavaliers say Kevin Love (left foot surgery) will now progress with select basketball activities and continue to advance his therapy and strength and conditioning program. A timeline will be established as progression through this phase of his rehabilitation is complete.— Marc J. Spears (@MarcJSpearsESPN) January 4, 2019
What This Means
Ever since he moved to Cleveland in 2014, trade rumors have circled. The former Minnesota Timberwolves star, considered to be the most expendable of the Cavs' Big Three, was the player most expected to leave the team.
A few seasons later, he's the only one who remains, with Kyrie Irving joining the Boston Celtics and LeBron James moving to Los Angeles.
Given that they handed him a four-year deal, it doesn't seem like Love is a player Cleveland want to move on. And, by the looks of things, he will be reclaiming his mantle as their top man when he resumes playing sometime this month.