Cavaliers understood to still be the front-runners to sign star power forward.
The Chicago Bulls have reportedly made a late push to construct a trade deal to acquire Minnesota Timberwolves power forward Kevin Love.
However, the Cleveland Cavaliers are still confident that they will eventually complete a transaction, given that they have several pieces that will likely be more appealing to the Timberwolves.
According to ESPN, the Cavs believe that they are progressing well in their pursuit after LeBron James backed the decision to acquire Love, and their offer is said to consist of Andrew Wiggins, Anthony Bennett and a future first-round pick.
It is understood that one more player might need to be added to the package, but ultimately that is strong grounds for the Cavaliers to land their target.
In addition, the Cavs executed a trade on Tuesday that sent the guaranteed contract of guard Carrick Felix, a second-round pick and cash to the Utah Jazz for guard John Lucas III and forwards Erik Murphy and Malcom Thomas.
The trio all have non-guaranteed contracts which would give Cleveland more roster flexibility and trade assets which could all be linked to pushing to acquire Love.
Meanwhile, with the Golden State Warriors refusing to include Klay Thompson in any package for the 25-year-old, the Bulls have emerged as the strongest competition, although there is a theory that their interest is merely a ploy to force the Cavs, a divisional and Conference rival, to over-pay for Love.
It is believed that Chicago would offer a package including Taj Gibson, Jimmy Butler and other assets, however it is highly unlikely that the franchise would be willing to sacrifice that much depth and talent in return for Love who is not as effective on the defensive end which will worry coach Tom Thibodeau.
As a result, it is still likely that Love will be Cleveland bound to join forces with James, but Chicago’s entrance into the race is interesting, whether it is concrete interest or not.