The long absence from the courts isn’t causing the Cleveland Cavaliers to restrict Kevin Love from playing too many minutes. As far as they and he are concerned, he’s good to go for as much as they need him.
Love, who dislocated his shoulder in the playoffs which resulted in missing most of the postseason and an operation on it, has been back in action for two games in the preseason, scoring 6 points in 13 minutes against the Toronto Raptors and then getting 22 minutes in the win (the Cavs’ first in preseason) against the Dallas Mavericks, scoring 10 points while going 2-for-5 from beyond the arc. The games came on back-to-back nights.
David Blatt doesn’t think there’s going to be any special need for a pitch count regarding Love, although he does want to see him go through a full week of contact practices and games before passing final judgement.
I don’t expect any issues with back-to-back. Regarding the minutes, I’m going to monitor him this week. Still want to see him get through a good full week of contact practice and see how he’s doing. I don’t expect there to be any great limitation other than what we would plan for considering the length and depth of the season.
Considering the injuries the Cavaliers have to deal with as we head into the season, Blatt doesn’t have much of a choice. The Cavaliers are favored by the NBA’s general managers to win the title after losing in the finals four months ago, with LeBron James carrying the team through 5 games without Kyrie Irving and Love. James is out for the moment, Irving won’t be back until at least December and Iman Shumpert is also injured.
Even if the Cavaliers would love to take it more carefully with Love, they can’t really afford to considering their impressive roster is filled with inactive and unavailable players at the moment.