Kevin Love’s reputation took a hit at the start of the season due to his public, on-court outbursts but he’s now rehabbed his reputation due to the shutdown.
Cleveland Cavalier player Kevin Love has been one of the driving forces for good during the COVID-19 pandemic, which has shut down just about every sports league at the moment. One of the first things asked when the NBA announced their season was being suspended was how those who work at the arenas would get by. Love stepped up almost immediately, vowing to help the employees that work at the Rocket Mortgage Fieldhouse.
Love donated $100,000 to the Cavs arena workers through his Kevin Love Fund, with a message about being a community leader following.
“It was just a way for me to try and help navigate this incredibly stressful and anxiety-ridden to just pay it forward and really help them,” Love said. “I think it’s more of a time for us to step up and be community leaders and do what’s right for the people that are having a stressful and tough time.”
This couldn’t have come at a better time for Love, who’s reputation of a talented player and a good team guy was rocked hard due to in-fighting with the Cavs and their management. Love had several on-court tantrums during the season and was suspected of being one of the players who privately slammed previous head coach John Beilein to the media. Now, no media source has ever verified who they were speaking to during the Beilein era, but Love seemed like a reasonable option.
Then there was all the trade discussion, the issues with Love and Koby Altman, and it’s not really that hard to see how and why Love’s reputation took a huge hit. Then the shutdown happened. Let’s be clear, I don’t believe that Love is taking advantage of the situation for good publicity. I think he truly does want to help, which is why his reputation is in fact healing.
Since the whole thing has started Love, who’s battle with anxiety and panic attacks is well known now, has also taken to the internet to offer encouragement for those dealing with similar afflictions. In a year where he was taken to task for so many incidents of pettiness and frustration, to hear him dispensing advice and helping those in need is a welcomed reprieve from someone who fans were hoping got traded away at the deadline.
Hopefully, the season is able to continue, and Love can take this new clarity and focus onto the court for the last stretch of games; however many there are left. Love and so many others who are putting others first during this time of great strain should be applauded and celebrated.
Stay safe out there, and like Love said, remember to practice compassion and patience.