The Cleveland Cavaliers will be without Kevin Love in Game 7 of the Eastern Conference Finals on Sunday, and they are hoping Jeff Green can be the one to pick up most of the slack.
Cavs head coach Ty Lue told reporters at Sunday morning’s shootaround that Green will start in place of Love, who is out with a concussion.
From Cavs shootaround: Jeff Green will get the start in Kevin Love’s place for Game 7, in the hopes of giving Cleveland the defensive versatility they showed in Game 6.
As for LeBron, he’ll play his 100th game of the season tonight pic.twitter.com/xz4rqJ3D0a
— Rachel Nichols (@Rachel__Nichols) May 27, 2018
Green had his best game of the series and arguably the entire postseason in Game 6, as he scored 14 points and blocked two shots. Brad Stevens and the Boston Celtics will have had more time to prepare for facing him heading into Sunday’s game, but Cleveland will likely need Green to be equally effective in order to win on the road.
Love ended up in the NBA’s concussion protocol after a nasty collision with Jayson Tatum on Friday night. He has averaged 12.5 points and 9.8 rebounds per game during the series.
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The Cleveland Cavaliers will reportedly be without Kevin Love in Game 7 of the Eastern Conference Finals.
According to Cleveland.com’s Joe Vardon, Love will miss the decisive game against the Boston Celtics due to the concussion he suffered during Game 6.
Updating now: Kevin Love is out for Game 7
— Joe Vardon (@joevardon) May 26, 2018
This can’t be considered a huge surprise considering the circumstances that Love is dealing with. The Cavaliers had been playing it safe, but given the nature of the injury and the short turnaround, there was nothing they could have done. The onus will be on LeBron James to win a road game for the first time in the series if the Cavaliers want to play in their fourth consecutive NBA Finals.
The Cleveland Cavaliers offered little clarity on Kevin Love’s status for Game 7 on Saturday.
The Cavaliers announced that Love remains in the NBA’s concussion protocol, and there’s no word on whether he’ll be able to play in Sunday’s Game 7 with a trip to the NBA Finals on the line.
— Tom Withers (@twithersAP) May 26, 2018
As a reminder, Love has a number of steps to clear before he can be allowed to play.
Now that Kevin Love is officially in the NBA’s concussion protocol, here are the steps he would have to pass to be cleared to play again: pic.twitter.com/mAde9ZzXHG
— Rachel Nichols (@Rachel__Nichols) May 26, 2018
Love considers himself a toss-up. This one could go down to the wire.
The Cleveland Cavaliers forced a Game 7 in their Eastern Conference Finals series against the Boston Celtics on Friday night, but it sounds like All-Star big man Kevin Love will be very much questionable for that deciding contest.
Love, who was injured in the first quarter on a collision with Jayson Tatum and did not return to the game, told Jason Lloyd of The Athletic afterwards that he was a “toss-up” for Sunday’s Game 7 in Boston. Lloyd also noted that Love will have more tests to pass before he receives any clearance.
Saw Kevin Love on his way out of the arena. Sounds like we'll have more answers tomorrow. He has more tests to pass before he can be cleared to play. As for his status for Sunday: "Toss-up," he said.
— Jason Lloyd (@JasonLloydNBA) May 26, 2018
The Cavs were mostly tight-lipped about Love’s status during the game, but the concern here is that he may have suffered a concussion. Jeff Green and Larry Nance Jr helped picked up the slack for Love for the rest of Game 6 (on top of another superhuman performance by LeBron James, of course). But it remains to be seen how well-equipped the already-thin Cavs will be if the star big man is out for Sunday’s Game 7 as well.
Kevin Love has been declared out for the remainder of Game 6 of the Eastern Conference Finals on Friday night after hitting his head in a collision with Jayson Tatum.
Love checked out with just under seven minutes to go in the first quarter. He had run into Tatum and appeared to hit his head on the Boston Celtics forward’s head/shoulder. Love went down immediately and called to the bench to be subbed out.
Oh no. Kevin Love looks pretty banged up after bumping heads with Jayson Tatum… pic.twitter.com/b7OXcJc67m
— Dime on UPROXX (@DimeUPROXX) May 26, 2018
Love had four rebounds in five minutes prior to leaving the game.
Love was taken into the locker room for evaluation. At halftime word emerged that he would be out for the rest of the game as he was evaluated for a concussion.
If Love does get diagnosed with a concussion, it would be tough for him to be cleared from the league’s concussion protocol in time for a potential Game 7.
According to NBC Sports Boston, a player needs the following to be cleared from concussion protocol:
– He is without concussion-related symptoms at rest.
– He has been evaluated by a physician.
– He has successfully completed the NBA return-to-participation exertion protocol.
– A team physician has discussed the return-to-participation process and decision with the Director of the NBA concussion program, Dr. Jeffrey Kutcher.
Kevin Love’s performance in Game 4 of the Eastern Conference Finals on Monday night earned him high marks from even LeBron James’ daughter.
According to Cleveland.com’s Hayden Grove, LeBron was on FaceTime with his daughter in the Cavs’ locker room after Game 4. Zhuri, who is 3.5 years old, asked to speak with Love to congratulate him.
Great scene in Cavs locker room. LeBron was FaceTiming his daughter, Zhuri. She asked to see Kevin Love. Someone brought the phone over to Kevin and she said “good game!”
Kevin responded, “Not me, that was your Dad.” #Cavs
— Hayden Grove (@H_Grove) May 22, 2018
Love shot just 3-for-12 with 9 points and six turnovers, though he did have 11 rebounds. As if his Cleveland Cavaliers getting the 111-102 win over Boston weren’t enough to make him feel good, the love from Zhuri had to push things over the top.
Kevin Love exited Friday night’s Cleveland Cavaliers-Indiana Pacers playoff game after taking an elbow to the face.
Love was down low to fight for a rebound following a LeBron James missed jumper early in the third quarter. He got caught in the face by an inadvertent elbow from Myles Turner and went down to the floor.
Love’s Cavs were down 62-47 in Game 6 of the series at the time that he got hurt. Love remained on the floor but missed two possessions entirely and then was kind of a non-factor for another two possessions — though he grabbed one rebound — before there was finally a timeout called to get Love out of the game.
Tristan Thompson entered the game for Love to get some rare minutes in the series. Love had seven points and seven rebounds in 20 minutes before exiting the game.
It’s been a rough season for Love filled with fluke injuries. He suffered a broken hand in late January, he had a tooth knocked out by an elbow in March, and he got his thumb examined after jamming it earlier in the series. Now he took a tough elbow to the face.