Kevin Love.

Kevin Love reveals how Tyronn Lue inspired him to return to his best

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The Cleveland Cavaliers have been rolling in the playoffs and remain undefeated after consecutive sweeps against the Detroit Pistons and Atlanta Hawks in the first two rounds.

They are more than living up to their tags as the Eastern Conference favourites and look certain to make a second straight appearance in the NBA finals. 

The Cavs' big three of LeBron James, Kyrie Irving and Kevin Love are finally clicking together and playing the best basketball since the trio got together two years ago. With the three of them on the floor, the Cavaliers are 12-0 in the postseason. 

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The form of Love, in particular, has been pivotal to the Wine and Gold's impressive start in these playoffs as he looks comfortable with the team for the first time since he joined from Minnesota.

The big man is getting more shots and is finally a key component in the Cleveland offence and it's clear he's growing in confidence, as evidenced by his eight three-point shots in the game four win in Atlanta.

The 27-year-old's two seasons in Cleveland haven't always gone according to plan, but he feels part of the team now more than ever and he credits head coach Tyronn Lue for this after he inspired him with some strong words during the regular season.

Cleveland Cavaliers v Atlanta Hawks - Game Three

Per ESPN, after a defeat against the lowly Brooklyn Nets at the Barclays Center in March, Lue gathered his group in the ballroom at the Trump SoHo New York it was staying at for a planned film session.

The rookie coach chose the moment to lay into his team and tell them some home truths, with some special choice words reserved for Love, which Lue shared with reporters post-game in Atlanta. 

"You want the real message?" Lue asked, per ESPN.

Chicago Bulls v Cleveland Cavaliers

"[I] just said, 'Kevin, Kyrie [Irving] and Bron (LeBron James), each night you guys got to know what to expect out of each other. 'Until you all do that, we aren't going to be able to win.'

"And I said, 'Kevin, you got to be more aggressive. Tell LeBron, I'm a bad m-----f----- too, so throw me the ball.' Be aggressive. Run the floor. If you're open, we got to throw you the ball. You got to demand the basketball and I said, 'Score the ball and be aggressive.'"

Lue's words resonated with Love for the remainder of the campaign and he is now playing exactly like his coach wanted and the Cavaliers are the biggest beneficiaries.

"I mean, Ty has played with, and had to go against, a lot of bad m----f------. So to get that, especially from your head coach, it's a lot of confidence," Love said. "And I have been one in this league. [Lue] just wanted me to go out there and show it."

With Love playing like he's doing at the moment, the Ohio-based outfit is tough to beat and will give the Golden State Warriors, San Antonio Spurs of Oklahoma Thunder a run for their money in the NBA finals in June.

LeBron James
Cleveland Cavaliers
Central Division
Eastern Conference
Kevin Love

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