Kevin Love suitors won't tip hand this early

Kevin Love suitors won't tip hand this early
June 19, 2014, 10:15 am
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In 77 games last season, Kevin Love averaged 26.1 points, 12.5 rebounds, and 4.4 assists per game. (USATI)

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BOSTON — Like the breezy gusts felt by those relaxing in Aruba, the trade winds of the NBA also have a way of changing quickly and without notice.

Just when it seemed the consensus for so many was that Boston was the leader in the Kevin Love sweepstakes, out comes reports indicating that other teams such as Golden State, Chicago and Denver want to get in and may potentially be in better position to pull the trigger on a deal.

Sorting through all the truths, half-truths and pipe dreams, there are some indisputable facts.

Minnesota doesn't want to trade Kevin Love, but has little choice because the three-time All-Star is tired of the cold winters followed by playoff game-free springs in late April and early May.

Boston is interested in making a deal for Love and have lots of assets to make it happen.

Love is interested in Boston, enough to where he came to the city to check it out on his own time and dime.

But the X-factor in this entire process is Flip Saunders, whose dual role as Minnesota's coach and decision-maker on personnel moves may be creating a conflict of personal interest.

As the coach, he wants to win now, which is understandable. He has been through enough rebuilding projects in Minnesota before.

It ain't pretty.

Eventually, Saunders molded them into a playoff team, but one that never had home-court advantage in the first round until 2004, when they advanced all the way to the Western Conference finals.

But that was so, so long ago.

Kevin Love has logged six seasons in Minnesota, with his only playoff experience being whatever he saw on TV.

And when you look at their team now, even with Love, they're on the outside of the playoff bubble, looking in.

There have been some interesting names tossed around as possible additions to the Minnesota roster in exchange for Love, but there has yet to surface a player combination that on paper at least, makes Minnesota any better than a team that could contend for a playoff berth.

If teams are willing to give you proven talent like say, Golden State's Klay Thompson and Harrison Barnes, they're not as inclined to empty the shelf of draft picks, too.

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