Once again it's happening; this Love is unrequited. Unfortunately for the Boston Celtics, a deal has been agreed on between the Minnesota Timberwolves and Cleveland Cavaliers that will make Kevin Love teammates with LeBron James.
Even though the trade can't become official until August 23, the teams have reached an agreement in principle; Cleveland will send No. 1 picks Andrew Wiggins and Anthony Bennett, along with their protected 2015 first round draft pick to Minnesota in return for Love, according to Adrian Wojnarowski.
It's a heavy price to pay for Cleveland, but it's an easy deal to make. There will not be a more lethal screen game combination than LeBron and Love. With James' spectacular all-around abilities, Love will flourish either on the roll or the pop.
Most fans get excited about dunks, but nothing gets me more fired up than a perfect outlet pass. Maybe it's because it's a play that I practiced as a kid and take pride in, but it's one of the many reasons why Kevin Love is one of my favorite players. There is quite simply not a better player at making lead passes than Love.
But he's never had a receiver like LeBron on the other end. A Love outlet pass to LeBron in transition could become the most efficient play type in all of the NBA, and I would expect them to make weekly appearances on the SportsCenter Top 10 list (less loud dunks and more sexy passes, please ESPN?).
They will probably soon enter the conversation as one of the greatest quarterback/wide receiver combinations of all-time, finding themselves amongst star duos like Brady and Moss, Montana and Rice, Manning and --- oh wait, wrong sport...
Anyway, this is a very exciting trade for the NBA, but what does it mean for the Celtics?
Not a lot, actually -- unless Minnesota decides to swing a player their way -- the implications for the Celtics were already set in stone when they decided to help facilitate Cleveland's signing of LeBron James, because that's when it became clear that no one could top any Cleveland offer for Love.
In that deal, Boston acquired Tyler Zeller, Marcus Thornton, and a protected first round draft pick. Even though Zeller and Thornton aren't high impact players, they can potentially contribute on a winning team. At the least, Zeller will provide some rim protection, length, inside scoring, and athleticism at the center position, and Thornton is an ace spot up shooter.
Boston knew what they were getting into when they made the deal because the writing was on the wall: Cleveland was going to make a run at Kevin Love if they acquired LeBron James. In a sense, the Celtics knew they were removing themselves from contention for Love, but the price was too steep anyway, especially since it took two star prospects in Wiggins and Bennett for the Cavs to complete a trade.
Wojnarowski also reported that Love will re-sign with the Cavaliers as a part of the agreement, so that removes him as an option for the Celtics in 2015. Even though there will be other free agents and trading options, the big fish is gone. Will Boston be able to find love with another fish in the sea?
At least Celtics fans will have Kevin Love's unexpected visit to Boston and his handshake with Rajon Rondo at Fenway to remember. Good times.
In all seriousness, there are plenty of positives for fans to think about. Most importantly, Danny Ainge still has an arsenal of assets to use. With more draft picks than any other team in the league, a plethora of talented young players, and affordable veterans to use as trading chips, Boston is still in a great position to make some trades down the line.
Yet, despite these silver linings, many Boston Celtics will be crying themselves to sleep tonight because our Love has gone to Cleveland...our Love is unrequited.