It seems Andrew Wiggins may not be untouchable, after all. Despite reportedly being taken off the board in trade talks involving Kevin Love, the 2014 NBA Draft’s top overall draft pick could indeed be added to a trade package.
Wiggins was temporarily “hands off” earlier in the week, and was reportedly even told he would not be traded. However, with the Minnesota Timberwolves insisting any trade for Kevin Love would have to include the young superstar in the making, the Cavs seem to be bending a bit.
As talented and “special” as Wiggins appears to be, the move actually makes sense for Cleveland, as they just got LeBron James back in town and will want to do all they can to help James bring a title home.
James is said to be a fan of bringing Love on board, which would effectively give James his own “Big 3” in Cleveland, with Love and point guard Kyrie Irving being two of the game’s best offensive players.
Nothing is set in stone, but an inclusion of Wiggins (if it’s in fact legit) could expedite trade talks and get a deal done before the 2014-15 NBA season takes off. Love has also let it be known that he is open to the idea of joining James in Cleveland, as winning and competing at a high level has been high atop his list of demands when it comes to signing long-term somewhere.
The Timberwolves had recently commented that they’d like to try to keep Love around, but with a deal like this potentially on the table, they may not have a choice. Love seems intent on leaving Minnesota one way or another, whether it be a blockbuster trade of his choosing or as a free agent following the upcoming NBA season.
There are two ways to look at the Love/Wiggins trade rumors. On one side, Wiggins is a very athletic and versatile wing player. In time, he should be quite good and could be a Scotie Pippen to James. Unfortunately, he’s very young and still fairly raw, which could make the path to that level of play a log one.
At 30 years old, James is now in the prime of his career and as physically imposing of a player as he is, it’s anyone’s guess just how long he’ll be able to play at an elite level. Another 4-5 years is probably a good guess, but the Cavs want to win now (and as much as possible). Bringing on a proven scorer and rebounder like Love would help solidify their offense as one of the best in the NBA (if not the top one, overall) and would help make them legit title contenders right away.
Only time will tell if Wiggins is the piece that will get the deal done, but the mere fact that he’s now being made available at least shows the Cavs are very serious about turning into a championship contender in a hurry. Now the ball is in Minnesota’s court.