When LeBron James announced his commitment to the Los Angeles Lakers this summer, the eyes of every Cleveland Cavaliers fan turned toward Kevin Love's. Many assumed Love would be traded in preparation for a complete rebuild in Cleveland, but instead the franchise chose to extend Love, cementing his place as the Cavs' go-to scorer, at least in the near future.
Love has taken a secondary -- at times tertiary -- role in Cleveland since coming over in 2014 from the Minnesota Timberwolves, where he was one of the league's leading scorers and rebounders. With James in Los Angeles, Love will be tasked with picking up the scoring and playmaking slack in his 11th NBA season.
Love joined "Reiter's Block" on CBS Sports HQ, and host Bill Reiter pointed out that the Cavs are 35-7 when Love scores 25 or more points. Reiter then asked Love about going back to his Minnesota glory days after years of being more of a role player in Cleveland. Love said he's not worried about making the transition back to the alpha dog, but stressed making the right play over scoring (you can see the full interview in the video above).
"It's not like I forgot how to play basketball. I can score the ball at a high clip," Love said. "But I'm gonna do whatever's asked of me out there. I don't expect to be top-five in scoring like I was, or even top-five in rebounding like I was. I'm looking to make the right play -- I'm not setting those as goals, stats.
"The only thing I really care about after sacrificing so much is the win column. Will there be times when I need to put up 25 or 30 points? Sure. Will there be times when I need to clean up the glass at a very high rate in certain games? Of course. But I'm gonna be looking a lot more to facilitate like I did in Minnesota."
Love has averaged 17.1 points and 10.0 rebounds in four seasons in Cleveland, making the All-Star team each of the past two years. It's a far cry, statistically, from his final season in Minnesota, when he averaged a robust 26.1 points and 12.5 rebounds while making the All-NBA second team.
At age 30, Love might not be able to just flip the switch and go back to that type of production. But there's no doubt he'll be asked to do much more offensively, and will likely remind people of just how great he can be.