Kevin Love says playing with hometown Trail Blazers and Damian Lillard would be 'special'

On this week’s episode of the “Posted Up with Chris Haynes” podcast, Cleveland Cavaliers forward Kevin Love revealed that it would be “special” if he had the chance to play for his hometown NBA team: the Portland Trail Blazers.

“Who wouldn’t want to play with Dame Lillard, first of all,” Love said on “Posted Up.” “Dame, he’s special. He’s amazing. I claim Portland when they ask me where I’m from. It’s where I spent all of my formative years. I grew up in Portland. When people ask where I was born, obviously I say L.A. But Portland is always going to be a special place in my heart. Whether it be at the end of my career, whether it be in six months, or whatever it may be, if I was wearing a Portland jersey, that’s special. That’s playing at home.”

Prior to his admission, the 32-year-old's interest in playing at home was always a mystery.

Kevin Love waits to be introduced before an NBA game.
Kevin Love said on the "Posted Up with Chris Haynes" podcast that it would "special" to play for his hometown team, the Portland Trail Blazers. (AP Photo/Ron Schwane) (ASSOCIATED PRESS)

Love has two years remaining on a four-year, $120 million extension he signed in 2018. But it is highly unlikely the five-time All-Star finishes the deal in Cleveland as the team is investing in establishing a young core of Collin Sexton, Darius Garland and Jarrett Allen.

Furthermore, Love ended quite an eventful week. A week ago was the frustrating inbound blunder versus the Toronto Raptors that led to his fourth-quarter benching. And then on Friday, he played 22 minutes against the Washington Wizards and had zero shot attempts.

All signs are pointing to the possibility of Love and the Cavaliers separating as early as this offseason.

“What’s the saying? ‘You want to make God laugh, tell him your plans.’ Obviously [Portland’s] a special place. I love CJ [McCollum]. Melo [Carmelo Anthony] has done an incredible job stepping in there and [coach] Terry Stotts. Portland has always had something special,” Love said on “Posted Up.”

“And I’m happy that they’ve had success this year even without their fans because if you’ve been to Portland, you’ve played in Portland, played against Portland, their fans come out. They’ve got to be some of the top fans in the league. Rip City has always been special. I used to go to the Memorial Coliseum growing up, the whole Rose Quarters. My first concert was there; I kissed my first girlfriend there. Portland is a special place for me. If I play there, or not ever, I’m always going to go back and that’s always going to be a place that I represent no matter what.”

Love — a 13-year NBA veteran — has appeared in 21 games and is averaging 11.5 points and 6.8 rebounds in 23.8 minutes of play this season.

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