According to Cavaliers’ head coach Tyronn Lue, All-Star forward Kevin Love’s status for Game 1 of the Finals is currently uncertain, as he remains in the NBA’s concussion protocol.
Love suffered the injury early in Game 6 when he and Celtics’ rookie Jayson Tatum bumped heads. Love went down and was helped up and immediately was taken to the locker room. Love was unavailable for the series-deciding game 7 and had to remain in the locker room area because his sensitivity to the lights and the noise of the game 7 environment.
Before Love can return to action he must satisfy the following conditions per the league’s concussion protocol:
1. He is without concussion-related symptoms at rest.
2. He has been evaluated by a physician.
3. He has successfully completed the NBA return-to-participation exertion protocol.
4. A team physician has discussed the return-to-participation process and decision with the Director of the NBA concussion program, Dr. Jeffrey Kutcher.
Since Love has had previous concussion issues ( he missed a game in the 2016 Finals and time in March), there could be some hang-ups about moving him through the steps quickly enough for him to be able to play in Game 1 of the Finals.
If Love is not cleared in time, the. Jeff Green will take his place in the starting lineup.