Cleveland Cavaliers forward Kevin Love expects to be back with the team next season, he told reporters Sunday. 

By SI Wire
May 31, 2015

Cleveland Cavaliers forward Kevin Love expects to be back with the team next season, he told reporters Sunday. 

"I truly haven't even thought about it but as I mentioned, I expect to be suiting up for Game 1 [of next season]," Love said, according to Cleveland.com. One reporter asked Love if he meant he would play for Cavs. "Yes sir," Love replied.

Love, 26, can become a free agent this off-season by declining to exercise his $16.7 million player option. 

Love also said in January that he did not plan to become a free agent. "I don't plan on opting out or any of that," Love told Cleveland.com. "I plan on being here."

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Love, a three-time All-Star, was acquired before this season in a trade with the Minnesota Timberwolves. Cleveland gave up two former No. 1 draft picks (Andrew Wiggins and Anthony Bennett) and a first-round pick in this year's draft. 

If he chooses not to opt out, Love would be delaying signing a potential max contract that would pay him in excess of $22 million per year.

The Cavaliers will be playing in the NBA Finals beginning on Thursday but will be without Love, who suffered a season-ending injury in Cleveland's first-round series. 

- Dan Gartland

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