Amid tons of speculation about him possibly leaving, Kevin Love said all along that he was going back to the Cleveland Cavaliers. On Wednesday afternoon, Love backed up his words, announcing to the world that he’ll be returning to Cleveland via The Players’ Tribune.
In a short post titled “Unfinished Business,” Love said this:
I’m going back to Cleveland.
After Game 1 of the NBA Finals, that’s when it really struck me. Sitting on the sidelines, I never wanted to play in a game more than that one. I had dreamed of playing in the NBA Finals and I just wanted to help my guys win. I couldn’t have been prouder of them as they poured their blood, sweat and tears onto the court.
Yeah, of course I’ve heard the free agency rumors. But at the end of the day, and after meeting with my teammates (it turns out pools are great meeting places) and with the front office, it was clear Cleveland was the place for me. We’re all on the same page and we’re all in. We have unfinished business and now it’s time to get back to work.
Points to Love for bringing up the poolside meeting in Los Angeles that people found out about via social media. Now, the contract details:
Kevin Love will accept a five-year, $110 million contract extension with the Cavs according to sources
— Brian Windhorst (@WindhorstESPN) July 1, 2015
Instead of opting for a shorter deal to hit free agency again sooner, Love is opting for the security and the long-term deal in Cleveland. He’s had some injury issues, including this past year of course, so that could’ve played a role in the decision to take the long-term contract.
Right around the time Love made his announcement, there was more Cavaliers news:
ESPN sources tell @WindhorstESPN & I that Cavs and Tristan Thompson are nearing agreement on deal that will pay the RFA in excess of $80 mil
— Marc Stein (@ESPNSteinLine) July 1, 2015
Tristan Thompson bet on himself last offseason by not agreeing to a contract extension that was significantly less guaranteed money than this deal, so the big man won big, thanks in large part to his performance in the playoffs when Love went down with his shoulder injury.
This is obviously a ton of money wrapped up in the power-forward position, and the Cavaliers are set to have a massive payroll bill. But it’ll certainly be worth it considering all the talent in place and the potential for titles. LeBron James should agree to a new deal soon, and Cleveland will be ready for another run.