Kevin Love had 31 points and 18 rebounds in Cleveland’s 99-92 Christmas Day loss to Golden State. The Cavaliers may have walked away with an L, but it was yet another impressive game for Love, who is enjoying an amazing season for the Cavaliers:
Love is having his best season in Cleveland by far
Love is averaging 20 points and 10 rebounds this year, and he’s doing it on the best shooting percentages he’s had since joining LeBron James and Cleveland in 2014. The All-Star big man is flirting with 50-40-90 club numbers, shooting 48 percent from the field, 41 percent from three, and 88 percent from the line.
If he reaches those percentages and holds them for the entire season, Love will become the first player in NBA history to do so while averaging 20 points and 10 rebounds.
K-Love also has 30 games with at least 30 points and 15 rebounds since his first 30-15 game in 2011. That count moves him one spot ahead of DeMarcus Cousins for more 30-point, 15-board games than any other active player:
Love’s play is exactly what the Cavaliers needed
Many expected Cleveland to run into some problems with both Isaiah Thomas and Derrick Rose sidelined with injuries early on. And they did: The Cavaliers got off to a 6-7 start.
But Love’s play has been a constant as the defending Eastern Conference champions get into midseason form. He has 20 double-doubles on the year, and we haven’t even arrived at the new year yet.
To make things more impressive, Love has done this at the center position after playing the power forward for his entire career. As a stretch big man, this helps spread the floor for LeBron by dragging the opposing center out to the perimeter.
It’s unclear if Love will be able to keep this type of production up all season long. His numbers might take a slight hit when Thomas — a 29-point-per-game scorer — finally joins the starting lineup.
But Love is playing absolutely out of this world in the first half of the season. And if you’re a Cavaliers fan, you should appreciate his game.
The Cleveland Cavaliers fell just short against the Golden State Warriors on Christmas Day.
However, star forward Kevin Love certainly brought his “A” game throughout Monday’s contest. In fact, Love became the first player in Cavaliers history to score at least 30 points and secure 15 rebounds in a Christmas Day game.
Love finished with 31 points on 9-of-25 shooting along with 18 rebounds in the Cavaliers 99-92 loss. The former UCLA Bruin did the bulk of his damage from the perimeter as he connected on 6-of-11 shots from three on the afternoon. He also recorded a pair of steals in the contest.
It was the first time that Love had made at least six threes in a game this season. Love had splashed home five shots from beyond the arc three times this season. He made 5-of-8 threes against the Washington Wizards on Dec. 17 and hit 5-of-11 long-range shots against the Milwaukee Bucks on Dec. 19.
Love continues to play some of the best basketball of his NBA career. He’s averaging 20.1 points and 10.4 rebounds and has cemented himself as the true second option on the Cavaliers roster next to LeBron James. It’ll be interesting to see if things stay that way when Isaiah Thomas likely returns to the lineup early in the New Year.