The Chicago Bulls are apparently dead serious about acquiring Kevin Love. Rumors of their interest emerged on Tuesday, but for the most part they were dismissed. The Cleveland Cavaliers are thought to be the front-runners in the sweepstakes for Love, but the Bulls aren’t just going to let them have the game’s best power forward.
— Chris Sheridan (@sheridanhoops) July 23, 2014
Chicago has upped the ante by taking Jimmy Butler off the table, and by putting Nikola Mirotic and Doug McDermott on the table. The report from Sheridan leads one to believe that the Minnesota Timberwolves like the offer from Chicago more in terms of the players, but that the draft pick(s) they could get from Cleveland would be enough to keep the Cavs in the driver’s seat.
Cleveland owns three first round picks next season, including one it acquired from Miami. That pick is expected to be part of the Cavs package to land Love.
At this point you have to say that it’s down to the Bulls and Cavs, and that the Warriors and Celtics are pretty much out of the running. That could change if Golden State puts Klay Thompson on the table, but for now it’s likely going to come down to Cleveland and Chicago.
The Bulls have too much youth on the trading block in my opinion. Their roster as it’s constructed right now could probably beat a Cavs team with Love in a seven game series. Chicago doesn’t need Love to compete for a title. Mirotic and McDermott are both promising rookies and it’s not worth the risk to deal away talented youth when there’s already a top-tier group of veterans in place.