Report: Danny Ainge met with Kevin Love, Harrison Barnes’ agent

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By Tyler Sullivan Follow on Twitter @TylerSully

Kevin Love’s struggles in the NBA Finals has turned every hoop-head in the city of Boston off the idea of the Cavs big man one day playing in Celtics green.

Well, maybe not everyone.

According to Real GM, Celtics President of Basketball Operations Danny Ainge recently met with Love’s agent.

Danny Ainge attend a workout with Excel Sports Management clients in New York City recently and met with prominent agent Jeff Schwartz, a league source told RealGM’s Andrew Perna. Schwartz represents Love, as well as Harrison Barnes, who will be a restricted free agent this summer.

Brandon Ingram, the presumed No. 2 pick in next week’s draft is also a client of Excel, but Ainge is believed to have inquired with Schwartz about whether a trade for Love could be revisited.

On the surface, this is hardly surprising. NBA GM’s meet with plenty of agents before the NBA Draft as well as free agency. If Ainge wasn’t doing this, you should be concerned.

Quickly as it relates to Barnes, who will almost certainly be playing under a max-deal next season, he a guy that can do every good, but nothing great. When you pay max money, you need to get great.

Now let’s look at Love… again.

The NBA Finals struggles have been widely covered. And Love deserves a lot criticism. Two points in Game 5? That’s just unacceptable for a player of his caliber. He’s also very soft on defense.

He would also be the Celtics best player.

As many holes in his game as there are, specifically on defense and just overall gumption, his talent is undeniable when he is in the right system. Brad Stevens should be able to get the most out of him if he found his way to Causeway Street.

He also could be a means to an end when it comes to landing a certain big time free agent, aka Kevin Durant.

Via the New York Post circa 2012,

Durant and Love have been thick as thieves since the seventh grade, relates the long-time confidant of Stan Love, Kevin’s father. They competed at countless AAU tournaments, talked late into many a morning about their future, money and how to keep it, girls, and basketball, texting daily when apart about their recruitment adventures.

For four years, they bunked together at the Nike Skills Camp in Portland, Ore. Even though Love lived down the road, he chose to hang with Durant.

So maybe this is why the Celtics are so enamored with a player that has been less than stellar in the 2016 NBA Finals. Could it really all be about Durant?

Probably not, but it absolutely plays a part in this crazy thing we call NBA Free Agency.

At the end of the day is Kevin Love better than what you have? Yes.

Should Celtics throw the kitchen sink to acquire him? No.

If Cleveland is selling Love on clearance, will Danny Ainge be first in line to browse around? You better believe it.

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