The Cleveland Cavaliers held a fiery team meeting in the practice facility locker room prior to Monday’s practice, during which several players challenged the legitimacy of Kevin Love’s illness that led him to leave Saturday’s loss to Oklahoma City early and miss Sunday’s practice, league sources told ESPN.
Several players were pushing for the Cavaliers’ management and coaching staff to hold Love accountable for leaving the arena before the end of Saturday’s game, and then missing Sunday’s practice, league sources told ESPN.
The meeting was loud and intense, only calming down once Love spoke to those gathered in the room and explained himself, league sources said.
The meeting included Cavaliers coach Ty Lue and general manager Koby Altman, league sources said.
There was a sense that the team was largely accepting of Love’s explanation, and that the airing out of issues could have a positive impact on what has become an increasingly fractured locker room. Within factions of the locker room, there has been blame for the Cavaliers’ struggles directed at everyone from Love to Isaiah Thomas, to Lue and the front office, led by Altman, and owner Dan Gilbert, league sources said.
Cleveland is in a spiral, dropping to 27-18 — only one game ahead of the Miami Heat for third place in the Eastern Conference. Cleveland has lost six of its past eight games, and plays San Antonio on Tuesday night in Texas.