Not four full games into his first playoff campaign, Love’s postseason experience was brought to an abrupt end by the Boston Celtics’ Kelly Olynyk. The two locked arms as they were fighting for position under the basket, and the Rapunzel-haired Olynyk looked like he gave Love’s left arm a tug or yank or pull or whatever you want to call it.
The end result of said skirmish was season-ending shoulder surgery for Love. Quite obviously, he wasn’t happy about it. And who could blame him, especially in the moment, knowing what just happened, knowing that his first-ever journey into the playoffs was ruined.
That would all change over time, of course. It had to.
Per the Northeast Ohio Media Group’s Chris Haynes:
As for Boston’s Kelly Olynyk, the one responsible for putting Love in this uncalled-for predicament, he claims to have moved on from the disdain of hearing Olynyk’s name. He claims.
“Oh yeah. I’m over it,” Love said. “I’m just trying to get healthy.”
Love said Olynyk has reached out multiple times and he acknowledged not returning any of his calls. He’ll save that conversation for down the road. Right now, he has more important business to tend to.
“All I’m focused on is getting healthy right now,” he said.
Sounds like he isn’t over it. If he was over it, you’d think Olynyk would be able to get through. Like, why not squash the beef ASAP, rather than prolong it and allow it to make headlines such as the one you’re scrolling below now? So no, it doesn’t seem like he’s over it.
And to be honest, that’s fine. He doesn’t need to be. It’s kinda-sorta fresh. He just returned to the team in general and is only starting to understand the meaning of bystander duty. This isn’t just Love’s first playoff dance; it’s the first time he’s competing for a title. And now, if the Cleveland Cavaliers somehow win one, it will have been without him. That thought cannot sit well, not after how much time was devoted to attempts at debunking the Cavaliers’ dynamic and Love’s role within their offense. The playoffs and the championship they can potentially yield is the F.U. by which the Cavaliers can validate themselves, even though they’re already definitive contenders. Love, however, could use that luxury, especially as he approaches free agency and continues to live a rumor-rife life.
So Love is free to keep putting the mediation session between he and Olynyk off if he wants. That’s his right. But he’ll have to forgive and forget at some point. Olynyk may not have done the classy thing then, but what he did in no way appeared overtly sadistic. Plus, he’s doing the classy thing now.
At least he’s trying to.
Love won’t quite let him just yet.