KEY POINTS

  • Love lauds Cavaliers new atmosphere and brotherhood
  • Love could spurn plans to be traded
  • Bickerstaff is big difference for the Cavs' renewed camaraderie

The Cleveland Cavaliers may be out of the NBA playoff race but that does not mean they are committed to losing. Rather than tank, it would be wise to use their remaining games to see where they can improve. But it appears patching up is not limited to the basketball floor. Kevin Love is showing signs of renewed interest, a good sign for the Cavaliers.

Love was in the center of NBA trade talks recently and most expected him to be dealt. The Portland Trail Blazers loomed as the logical team but nothing materialized. Love remained with the Cavs but the 31-year-old knew that there was a still chance he would be traded in the summer. But based on his recent talk with WKYC, the one-time NBA champion seems to be singing a different tune. In fact, it appears he is amazed at the Cavs new atmosphere, something he says is "through the roof."

If this remains until the end of the season, Love could end up staying with the Cavaliers moving forward. He was awarded a $120 million contract with the understanding that he would be the new leader of the franchise. Initially, everything seemed rocky with most questioning the move. But part of that was Love did not blend in well with what former head coach John Beilein wanted. With a new head coach in JB Bickerstaff at the helm, the landscape has totally changed for the Cavaliers.

Though he did not directly refer to Bickerstaff as the reason behind the renewed energy from within, the fact that he is now enjoying his stay and getting along with teammates could send of right signals. In a previous article, Tristan Thompson also showed renewed signs of life. He praised Bickerstaff, calling him a guy who knew how to read people. In fact, he ranked him next to Doc Rivers, Steve Kerr, and Tyronn Lue.

The Cavs are 3-1 since Bickerstaff took over and things are looking bright. But the key here is that Love and Thompson could be staying there after this season after all. It will be interesting if the third piece, newly acquired Andre Drummond, would change his tune as well. He previously said he was likely out after this season if Beilein stayed. Could his stand change with Bickerstaff now calling the shots?

Kevin Love Kevin Love of the Cleveland Cavaliers looks on during the game against the Minnesota Timberwolves at the Target Center in Minneapolis, Minnesota, Oct. 19, 2018. Photo: Hannah Foslien/Getty Images