Some general thoughts on the Cavaliers and Timberwolves talk:
— If the reports are true, the Cavs think Andrew Wiggins can be a special player. If the reports are true, the Timberwolves feel Kevin Love already is special. And if the reports are true, you can’t blame either side for feeling the way they do.
— Wiggins is 6-foot-8 and was the No. 1 overall pick in the NBA Draft. His vertical jump was measured at 44 inches at the pre-draft camp. He owns long arms and a smooth demeanor, and threw down a Dominique Wilkins-like dunk in traffic during a Cavs summer game. The upside is quite evident.
— Love is 6-foot-10 and he possesses more than upside. He possesses actual proven NBA ability. He is coming off a season in which he averaged 26.1 points and 12.5 rebounds. He shot 46 percent from the floor and 38 percent on 3-pointers. He can do it inside, outside, and in-between-side. He is probably on his way to the hall of fame.
— Wiggins is just 19 years old. Love is only 25 (actually 26 when the season starts). If the reports are true, the Cavs don’t want to include Wiggins in a deal for Love — despite the fact a lineup of LeBron James, Kyrie Irving and Love would put you in championship contention right away. As for that same lineup with Wiggins instead of Love? Well, we really have no clue.
— Some folks suggest the Cavs would be crazy to give up Wiggins in a trade for Love. Wiggins can be the next Dr. J, they say. He has Kobe Bryant-athleticism, the ability to rise up high on his jumper and dunk in your eye. It’s like having a 7-footer at shooting guard. That’s how athletic, how dynamic, Wiggins can be.
— Love is more of a Moses Malone with range, a rebounder, a shooter, a tough guy with a touch. He has gotten it done, when healthy, year after year, for six NBA seasons. He is an All-Star, undoubtedly one of the game’s top three power forwards. As one executive asked, "If the Cavs already had Kevin Love, would they be saying they should trade him for Andrew Wiggins? Because that’s what a lot of Cavs fans seem to be saying. That Wiggins is greater (than Love)." It’s a fair point.
— Right now, it appears the Cavs and Timberwolves have drawn their lines in the sand. "No Wiggins, no Love," the T-Wolves seem to be saying. "You’re not getting Wiggins, period," the Cavs seem to respond. Again, each stance makes perfect sense — for now.
— But the Cavs probably have the actual advantage here. Love won’t be signing a contract extension with the Timberwolves. So that means the T-Wolves stand a chance to lose him for nothing. The Cavs, however, are willing to offer them something. Just not Wiggins. Not now. And frankly, why should they?
— Ideally, the Cavs would love to have Love join James, Irving and, yes, Wiggins. That’s quite a lineup. The Cavs really like power forward Tristan Thompson, too. And shooting guard Dion Waiters. New coach David Blatt would be just fine, thrilled actually, moving forward with the hand he has already been dealt. Throw veteran Mike Miller into the equation (he reportedly agreed to a deal with the Cavs on Tuesday), and the Cavs already have plenty of youth, depth and hope.
— So if there’s no desperation on the Cavs’ part for Love, that’s completely understandable. And if the Wolves want to hang on to Love for now, that’s understandable, too. The question seems to be who will bend first. The Cavs are determined to keep Wiggins. The Wolves don’t want to move Love for anyone else. Right now, that’s just the way it’s gonna be.