Kevin Love says he’s had his eyes on playing 20 years in the NBA - Heat Nation

Kevin Love says he’s had his eyes on playing 20 years in the NBA

Kevin Love Miami Heat Rick Osentoski-USA TODAY Sports

Miami Heat forward Kevin Love revealed that he has his eyes on playing 20 seasons in the NBA.

Love, the No. 5 overall pick in the 2008 NBA Draft, is currently in his 15th NBA season.

“I don’t know if I’ll make it to 20, but I’ve always had my eyes on that,” Love told The Ringer’s Wes Goldberg.

Love has adjusted throughout his career, which began with the Minnesota Timberwolves. There, Love became a star player for the Wolves, making three All-Star teams and averaging 19.2 points and 12.2 rebounds per game across six seasons.

However, a trade to the Cleveland Cavaliers forced Love to reinvent his game playing alongside LeBron James and Kyrie Irving. Love took a smaller role as a scorer, but he was an integral part in the team winning the NBA Finals in the 2015-16 season.

After being bought out by the Cavs this season, Love has embraced a smaller role with the Heat, accepting that he is now a role player.

“I didn’t come here to shoot 15 shots a game or ask for more,” Love said. “I just wanted to be able to make my impact, make my stamp on the game. Sometimes it’s not going to show up in the stat sheet; sometimes it is, but you’re affecting winning. That’s kind of where I’m at in my career right now.”

Since joining the Heat, Love appeared in 21 regular season games, averaging 7.7 points, 5.7 rebounds and 1.9 assists per game. He started 17 of the 21 games he appeared in.

In Miami’s loss to the Atlanta Hawks in the league’s play-in tournament on Tuesday night, Love played just 3:27, making one of his two shot attempts from the field.

Love will be an unrestricted free agent at the end of the season, but he feels like he can still keep playing. Even though the big man’s best days are beyond him, he can still be a valuable player for his ability to stretch the floor from the forward spot.

“I’d like to play as long as the wheels aren’t falling off,” Love told Goldberg. “My body feels really good right now.”

The Heat could decide to keep Love beyond this season, but the team didn’t feel he was the missing piece in Tuesday’s loss, as evidenced by his playing time.

Love, 34, clearly wants to keep playing, but he’s going to have to be effective into his late 30s to do so in the NBA.

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