The Cavaliers would have no interest in a trade of power forward Kevin Love and point guard Ricky Rubio for Lakers point guard Russell Westbrook, despite the salaries lining up, according to Jake Fischer of Bleacher Report.
A league source who has spoken to Cavs executives told Hoops Wire he would see no reason for the resurgent team to make such a deal, and believes Fischer’s report is true — that the Cavs would rather have Love and Rubio than Westbrook.
That makes sense, given that Cleveland (17-12) enters Wednesday’s home game vs. the Rockets as winners of four straight and eight of the past 10.
As I noted in my appearance on Sports 4 CLE, the Cavs are perhaps the NBA’s most pleasant surprise, and there is no need to shake up the roster — or even tinker with it at this point. Any move for high-priced and fairly ball-dominant player such as Westbrook definitely isn’t something the Cavs need today.
As far as we can tell, a proposal of Westbrook for Love and Rubio has not been discussed. “I called Cleveland, and that call hasn’t been made,” Fischer said on the HoopsHype podcast.
Still, several reports have suggested Lakers star LeBron James would be very open to again joining up with Love, a friend and former teammate during the Cavs’ run of four straight Finals appearances (including winning the 2016 championship).
Rubio, who has an expiring contract, would undoubtedly be the type of pass-first veteran point guard the Lakers would love to pair next to James and fellow forward Anthony Davis.
But Love is having his best seasons in years, and both he and Rubio have been vital in helping the Cavs’ young core both in games and practice, with both serving roles of veteran leadership off the bench.
As of now, sources said, the Cavs have no desire to make any sort of major changes to the roster, though they are doing their due diligence in seeing who’s available around the league and at what cost.
Over the past few days, the Cavs have been linked to Simmons (story) and Pacers guard Caris LeVert (story), though league sources consider those any such actual talks to be exploratory in nature only.