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Saturday, November 22, 2014

Kevin Love: Timberwolves ‘hurt’ me by questioning if injury was legitimate

The more he speaks, the more Kevin Love sounds like a superstar who is on borrowed time with the Minnesota Timberwolves. It’s no secret that Love is upset with the direction of the Timberwolves, who have had seven straight losing seasons and have not made the playoffs since 2003. In addition, the All-Star forward was offended when some people within the organization expressed doubt over how he broke his hand.

“Even people in my own organization were asking if it was a legitimate injury, people calling my honesty and integrity into question,” Love told Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports. “And that’s what really hurt me.”

Love reportedly injured his hand during a round of knuckle pushups, causing him to miss the first nine games of the season. Apparently management felt as though he could be lying, which may have strained Love’s relationship with the group he already holds bitterness toward because of their decision to not offer him a max contract.

Ah, yes, the contract. Love also had more to say about that in his interview with Yahoo! Sports, adding that he understands no one wants to hear complaints from a player who signed a four-year, $62 million contract.

“I don’t know who labels people stars, but even [T’wolves owner] Glen Taylor said: I don’t think Kevin Love is a star, because he hasn’t led us to the playoffs,” Love explained. “I mean, it’s not like I had much support out there. That’s a tough pill to swallow.”

Minnesota has not been competitive since it traded Kevin Garnett to the Celtics, and as we told you before the team has absolutely nothing to show from that deal. In fact, Love seems baffled by the way the T-Wolves try to rebuild every season while other teams in the NBA build around their superstars and remain competitive.

“You walk into the locker room every year, and it’s completely turned over,” he said. “There’s new guys everywhere. And then it happens again and again. You start to wonder: Is there really a plan here? Is there really any kind of a … plan?

“Look at different teams around the league. Look at a San Antonio that continues to add talent around [Tim] Duncan and [Manu] Ginobili and [Tony] Parker. Look at what happens in Oklahoma City, the players they continue to add around their star players. Even the trade they had where they lost [James] Harden, they still added players that were going to fit well in their system. And speaking of small markets, look at a team like Memphis and all they’ve been able to accomplish. They’re getting the most out of their entire organization.”

It would be incredibly naive to think that Love is going to stick around after his current deal expires if the Timberwolves don’t make significant improvements — regardless of whether or not the team chooses to offer him a max contract this time around. Based on some of the things he says, it sounds like Love spends a lot of time thinking about his future away from Minnesota.

Photo credit: Steve Dykes/US Presswire



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