Love intends to join Heat after clearing waivers

Kevin Love plans to sign with the Miami Heat after clearing waivers, his agent, Jeff Schwartz, told ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski.

Love’s expectation is that he can play a sizable role in the Heat’s frontcourt rotation as they push into the Eastern Conference playoffs. Love also talked with the Philadelphia 76ers.

Love, 34, agreed to a contract buyout with the Cleveland Cavaliers on Saturday. He joined the Cavs in 2014 and was the last remaining link to the 2016 team that won the NBA title and ended the city’s 52-year pro sports championship drought. Love was in the final season of a four-year contract, with $8.5 million left on his deal at the time of the buyout, according to ESPN’s Bobby Marks.

Love requested a buyout earlier in the week after falling out of the Cavaliers’ rotation, sitting out their final 12 games before the All-Star break. The Cavaliers were 9-3 without Love in that stretch and entered the break in fourth place in the Eastern Conference.

He is averaging career lows in scoring (8.5 points per game) and rebounds (6.8) this season as a thumb injury has affected his shot. Over parts of 15 NBA seasons with Cleveland and Minnesota, Love has averaged 17.2 points and 10.5 rebounds per game. He is a 37.2% career shooter from 3-point range and helped USA Basketball win both Olympic and FIBA World Cup gold medals.

In addition to the planned acquisition of Love, the Heat are also planning to sign free agent veteran center Cody Zeller on Monday, sources told Wojnarowski.

ESPN’s Tim Bontemps and The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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