While the Cleveland Cavaliers and Minnesota Timberwolves attempt to work out the final kinks in the proposed Kevin Love for Andrew Wiggins trade, the NBA is keeping a close eye on them.
It’s previously been reported that the NBA could potentially block the deal if they feel there was a violation of league rules and while that may have been a laughable suggestion in the past, after the NBA deined the Lakers’ acquisition of Chris Paul for ‘basketball reasons’ there is reason to take such a threat seriously.
So why the fuss? Well, neither the Cavaliers nor Timberwolves have done anything incorrectly regarding the proposed trade (at least not publicly) though a suggestion that Kevin Love would opt-out of his contract at season end, only to re-sign has seemingly hit the nerve of the NBA.
If the Cavaliers have spoken to Love about his contractual plans moving forward, considering he’s not part of their roster, that would be considered tampering.
Of course, it’s a fine line for the NBA considering tampering goes on between players all the time and we’ve only seen significant punishment for such when the Timberwolves did so with Joe Smith back in the late 1990′s.
Proving such would also likely be very difficult for the NBA considering any potential conversations were likely held via word of mouth and there’s no written documentation to prove such. In the end, it’s likely just the NBA attempting to play big brother and letting each franchise know they shouldn’t get too frisky with their comments.
Most ironic of all? The NBA is already giving out refunds on Andrew Wiggins jerseys despite the trade not being official.