Love, Cleveland, LeBron. What is Going On?

Gerald Herbert

Yesterday was the wildest rumor day of the off-season so far. Nothing actually happened.

Early on Wednesday, the Cleveland Cavaliers cleared cap space by trading Jarrett Jack and Sergey Karasev (along with a protected pick) in a three way trade with Brooklyn and Boston. This put them in a position to make a max contract offer to LeBron James, and we were off and running.

Throughout the day, rumors swirled that James was headed back to Cleveland. Or that he might be. He met with Pat Riley later in the day but announced no decision.  Meanwhile, rumors sparked from a tweet from a Cleveland sports talk radio personality that the Cavs were trying to trade for Kevin Love, with Andrew Wiggins as the main bait.

Various reports contradicted this, others seemed to confirm that at least the Cavs were making a play for Love, whether Wiggins was involved or not.

On the face of it, it makes sense. James wants to win right now, and Kevin Love is obviously a huge addition for a win-now team. Wiggins, the first pick in last month's draft, is unlikely to help much right now, and is pretty unlikely to ever be as good as Kevin Love.

Of course, the Cavs fanbase went into a complete tizzy, as apparently Andrew Wiggins is the next coming of...something. They seem to be of the opinion that the Wolves should trade them Love for failed parts.

The truth is, I'd be hesitant to trade Love for Wiggins. This, of course, is entirely about how you view him as a prospect, and I just don't see a huge star there. He has physical tools, but wasn't a particularly dominant player at Kansas. He lacks certain basketball skills, and it isn't clear he will develop them. vjl's model is lukewarm on him, though views him as a likely contributor.

It wouldn't be the worst trade (I'd prefer it to a Golden State deal, for example), but I'm not jumping out of my skin to make it happen.

Obviously whether it's even a possibility awaits James' decision. If he does not sign with the Cavs, they obviously won't be interested.

Meanwhile, one of the pieces some of us were hoping would be available in a Love trade got taken off the table today when the Dallas Mavericks and Chandler Parsons agreed to a three year offer sheet worth something over $45M.  Once he signs, the Rockets will have 3 days to match, and he cannot be traded this summer. He'll either be a Rocket or a Maverick when the season starts.

Danny Ainge is said to still be working on figuring out a Love deal, but once the draft passed and there was no deal with the 6th pick, it became a lot harder. Whether it was Flip not wanting to make a draft pick deal, or Ainge not willing to part with the 6th pick, it's hard to see how Boston could put anything together, especially if it doesn't include Marcus Smart.

Late last night, we got this:

Yeah. I wouldn't hold my breath that the "good" offers are going to be rolling in anytime soon.

We're Wolves fans. This doesn't end well.

In other (bad) rumor news:

Darren Wolfson is reporting that the Wolves are interested in Evan Turner in free agency. I wish someone could explain to me why in words that I can understand, because I don't understand this. Turner seems like exactly the wrong wing player for this team; a non-shooter who likes to play with the ball in his hands? And oh by the way, isn't very good?

Last night, the Wolves summer league roster held a scrimmage at Target Center. Tim was there and gave us a report. I don't put stock in anything from summer league, but do your thing.

Players could sign actual contracts beginning at midnight; hopefully we will get some movement today, especially on the big names that everyone is waiting for so that other business can get done.

At the World Cup, one day after one of the most shocking and historic semifinals in tournament history, Argentina and the Netherlands played a goalless snoozefest of a game.  It was pretty crap, as they say. Extremely conservative play and well organized defenses led to little in the way of chance creation and nothing in the way of scoring. It went to penalties, where the Argentinian keeper Sergio Romero stopped two of the the first three Dutch tries, and Argentina made four in a row to send them through to the final, where they will meet an in-form German side.

With one day less rest, and 120 minutes under their belts, and having not looked particularly great all tournament, it's hard to see Argentina overcoming Germany, who were rampant in their semi against an abject Brazil. Germany is oozing with talented mid-field depth, and are always organized at the back, especially with Philip Lahm back in his appropriate right back spot. Manuel Neuer has been fantastic in (and out of) goal, and if Germany can clog things up for Messi, it's hard to see how Argentina will hurt them.

Today in History

48 BC: Battle of Dyrrhachium; Julius Caesar vs. Pompey. 
988: Founding date of Dublin, Ireland
1040: Lady Godiva's ride (according to legend)
1460: War of the Roses: Richard of York defeats King Henry VI at Northampton
1520: Treaty of Calais signed by French king Charles V and English king Henry VIII
1850: Millard Fillmore sworn in as President
1890: Wyoming becomes 44th state
1917: Emma Goldman (no relation AFAIK) imprisoned for obstructing military draft
1925: Jury selection in Scopes monkey trial. No monkeys permitted on jury. 
1956: 650,000 steel workers go on strike

Today's musical birthday is Arlo Guthrie, born in 1947


Yeah. Thursday.

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