CLEVELAND – Kevin Love will not be able to help LeBron James and the Cavaliers in Game 7 against the Celtics.
Love was placed in the NBA concussion protocol and the All-Star striker will miss the Sunday Series Final of the Eastern Conference Finals, a personal hit and another challenge for Cleveland to overcome.
The Cavaliers said Love, who unintentionally struck heads with Celtics rookie Jayson Tatum in the first quarter of Game 6, experienced concussion-like symptoms on Saturday before the team's flight to Boston.
Moments before the Cavs sent a news release updating the status of love, coach Tyronn Lue held a puzzling teleconference, during which he said the 29-year-old was still being evaluated and there was a possibility
Like everything others in this unpredictable, volatile season for Cleveland things changed quickly.
Now the Cavs will get by without their second-leading scorer and best rebounder if they try (1
Love is averaging 13.9 points and
10.0 rebounds in 17 playoff starts, and he's the # 2 scoring option for the Cavs, who relied harder on James in this postseason.
Celtics coach Brad Stevens believes cavaliers are dangerous even without love.
We need to prepare our team to play well no matter who plays for them, "Stevens said," Obviously they're getting a little less of the Love stuff and more of the other stuff … probably more opportunities for LeBron, more options for [Kyle] Korver and [JR] Smith, more options from which to choose and you were all very effective for them last night. "
There are statistical data showing that the Cavaliers were more effective in the series than Love was out there, but while Cleveland can be better on the defensive, Loves' shot ability helps the Cavs extend the ground and the Lanes for James to open.
"You can change more," Lue said Think, when Jeff [Green] plays that position, it makes you more defensive more versatile. But we miss his rebound. We miss his offensive abilities. It somehow breaks out. "
James scored 46 points in Friday's victory, his last breathtaking performance in perhaps the Superstars career's biggest postseason, with James averaging 33.9 points, 8.9 rebounds and 8.8 assists and had seven 40-point games and two buzzers.
33-year-old's next challenge: finding a way to beat the Celtics who have played on another
It's interesting that James, as he Cleveland's Bank and Kyrie Irving Will Be Sitting on Boston
The Cavs gave in to Irving's plea The Celtics traded him last summer, but the All-Star Point Watcher did not play knee surgery this season.  At one time, James, Irving and Love included Cleveland's "Big 3", a power Trio, won an NBA championship together and went to three straight finals before the break.
After Love went Friday, James, who played the final eight minutes on a wound r knee, help from George Hill (20 points), Green (14 points) and Larry Nance Jr. (10 points), as the Cavaliers to the finals second time in these playoffs battled against the elimination.
Lue said he was not worried about James, who preferred his leg as he walked slowly out of the Quicken Loans Arena on Saturday after Match 6.
For Love, the concussion is another setback in a tough season. He missed with a broken hand for seven weeks and revealed that he had attacks of panic attacks.
Love has suffered at least two other known concussions in his career – one that kept him out of Game 3 in the NBA Finals 2016. He also missed a game on 28 March in Charlotte with a head injury.
Love missed the bulk of the 2015 Cleveland Run for the final after shaking off his shoulder in the first round against Boston.