Kevin Love to Los Angeles Lakers?

In this hypothetical three team trade scenario involving the purple and gold, the Sacramento Kings, and the Cleveland Cavaliers, L.A. would essentially be receiving Kevin Love from the Cavs and shipping D'Angelo Russell off to Sacramento.

While this scenario would be a homecoming for UCLA alum Kevin Love, on paper it does not appear to be incredibly lucrative for the Los Angeles Lakers. The fact is that the current Kevin Love is a fraction of the Kevin Love that used to dominate in Minnesota. While he is currently scoring roughly 4 more points per game this season than each of his previous two seasons, Kevin Love has never quite been the player he was in Minnesota since arriving in Cleveland.

On top of which, at 28-years-old, Love is starting to get up there in age, combine this with his recent propensity for sustaining injuries, and this is looking more and more like L.A. would be getting the short end of the stick in this potential deal.

D'Angelo Russell may be a streaky player that lacks consistency at times, but, he has youth on his side. He may turn into an elite player sometime in the next 2-3 years -- or not, however, the point is that no one knows just yet how deep his well of potential runs. The Lakers ultimately need to ask themselves whether it's worth it to ship him off now while other teams are also interested in seeing what that potential has the capacity to develop into, or whether they want to take the risk and let him develop on their watch.

It is a bit of a gamble. Either they ship Russell off to the Kings and watch him either succeed or fail there while still being able to get some value in return in the form of Kevin Love, or, they play it close to the vest and allow him to develop into an elite player or flop on their dime. The NBA game is a high risk/high reward system -- they don't call it the draft lottery for nothing -- but, the safe bet here would be to hold onto Russell and live with the results.

The Sacramento Kings could get D'Angelo Russell

Ultimately, the scenario here is the same as mentioned above, only with different uniforms -- and the loss of DeMarcus Cousins. It's clear that the Kings are essentially hell-bent on shopping DeMarcus Cousins around and shipping him off. The Kings would be giving up the most talented player in this trade scenario and taking a gamble on Russell.

If the Kings have the goal in mind of building a young core for the future and going from there, the former #2 pick in Russell could be the way forward as far as that goes. But, the question remains: is it in the best interest of the Kings to give up an established All-Star still in his prime for a currently developing but still largely unproven player?

The Cleveland Cavaliers would get DeMarcus Cousins

While the other two teams would be making questionable moves, it's no question that if this deal were to go through, the Cleveland Cavaliers would be coming out of this with a steal, and coming out as the clear winners of this currently hypothetical scenario. The current Cleveland lineup minus DeMarcus Cousins is already a title contender, a favorite to repeat as champions, and essentially a guaranteed favorite to come out of the Eastern Conference (at the very least).

Adding Cousins to the mix while only giving up Kevin Love is an upgrade beyond upgrades. They would be getting the most dominant big man in the game today (still in his prime) to pair with LeBron James and Kyrie Irving. If you're Cleveland, you'd want to pull the trigger on this deal as soon as possible.

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