Cavs forward Kevin Love details experience with COVID-19: 'I went through it, man'
Cavaliers forward Kevin Love was able to return to the floor Wednesday night against the Brooklyn Nets after missing eight games after a positive COVID-19 test.
Love logged 21 minutes in his return, scoring 11 points to go with nine rebounds. After the game, he detailed the struggle he had with COVID-19, which sapped him of his stamina and led to a few tough days of isolation at home.
“I went through it, man," Love told reporters in Brooklyn, N.Y. "The first four or five days were pretty tough. All the usual symptoms that I think people might get. Crazy muscle aches, sensitive skin, can’t smell, taste, crazy body muscle spasms, fatigue.
"Then just chest and head got hit pretty tough as well. Definitely don’t wish that on anybody. After about five or six days I started to come out of it and probably Friday I was able to start working out again. So, start getting my stamina and wind back these next few games.”
Injuries have made Kevin Love's return even more important
Love's exit happened to come right as the Cavs got hot, winning six of the eight games he missed. Evan Mobley, Darius Garland and Jarrett Allen all stepped up their respective production levels, though injuries have taken a toll, making Love's return even more important.
The Cavs being short-handed, but also going on such a run, made not being a part of it all one of the toughest parts for Love.
“I will tell you, the hardest thing for me was wanting to be in those locker rooms postgame in Toronto and New York. Because everyone was texting me, ‘How are you doing?’ I was like, ‘Man, f***,'" Love said. "That’s the best part about seeing this team grow is how much we celebrate each other. Then it’s like everyone is pouring water on each other. I was explaining to people how hard it was to come off that road trip that we had.
"Fly all the way across the country, play Charlotte, win, go back home and since I’ve been here and been in the league so many years, after you take a long West Coast road trip and come back, usually that first game you get smacked. We came back, won, went right back on the road, don’t lead the entire game, play against Toronto, DG hits the two free throws, make a big defensive stop, ball goes out, we win and then playing in the Garden is never easy.
"We come back and win that game and it shows our growth that we were able to do that and I wanted to be around the team. Even if I wasn’t playing. Just being in those locker rooms because I know that was a lot of fun and I saw all the videos postgame and it was pretty cool. That’s what you miss the most.”
What was the toughest part of COVID-19 for Kevin Love?
Well, except for having to spend time away from his fiancee, Kate Bock, and his now-Instagram-famous dog, Vestry. But he was able to communicate with those around him electronically, which was certainly helpful and not a guarantee in the past.
“I think that’s the toughest part is having no, not even human contact but human interaction. That is probably the toughest part," Love said. "Didn’t get to see my fiancee. Didn’t get to see my dog. But the one thing I did do, and it’s funny I was talking about it with my therapist, he was like, ‘Do not let it go five, seven, nine days without talking to anybody. FaceTime people and stay engaged.’
"In the past, I would’ve just been like, ‘All right, I’m going to turn all the lights off and let 10 days pass.’ I think I did a good job of staying engaged with my teammates and staying engaged with my family.
"I’m one of those people where if you’re not in my every-day life, in the flesh here, I can lose touch with you or let a text message go for a few days and stuff like that. I took my time, did my work early, got back to e-mails and all that stuff. Tried to stay engaged with everybody as much as possible.”