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Report: LeBron James was concerned about Kevin Love not putting winning first

LeBron James, Kevin Love

Cleveland Cavaliers forwards LeBron James, left, and Kevin Love joke with each other on the bench in the fourth quarter of the Cavaliers’ 110-101 victory over the Denver Nuggets in an NBA basketball game in Denver on Friday, Nov. 7, 2014. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)


LeBron James was reportedly upset with Kevin Love for not fitting in.

Can we get more specific?

Ethan Skolnick of Bleacher Report:

It’s safe to say that the soap opera isn’t on permanent hiatus, even after Love—following a poolside pow-wow with James—re-signed for five years, a decision that suggests he’s not especially queasy about their ongoing collaboration. It also should alleviate James’ concerns, which he expressed to many confidants, especially early in the season, that Love wasn’t ready to put winning first.

Despite his excellent individual production, Love never made the playoffs with the Timberwolves. That was his norm for his first six seasons in the league. So, joining the title-contending Cavaliers was surely a culture shock.

At times, LeBron probably was not patient enough Love’s adjustment.

But, as Skolnick said, Love showed a huge commitment to winning by re-signing with the Cavaliers. The power forward could have bolted to a bigger market, escaping LeBron’s shadow and scoring more. And yes, that deal might have been somewhat about the money, but Love could have gotten more (though less security) by taking a two-year deal with a player option.

Love valued winning.

I expect year two with Love and LeBron to go better than last season. Love will have to show more he’s willing to make the sacrifices necessary to win, but late last year, LeBron showed a better understanding of Love’s predicament.

LeBron’s concerns were understandable, but if all goes right for Cleveland, they’ll become less and less relevant.