It’s more than a rumor: Timberwolves star Kevin Love, one of the top players in the NBA, will soon be traded to the Cleveland Cavaliers. After six years with the Timberwolves, Love, one of the NBA’s top 10 players, demanded that he be traded before the beginning of next season. The Timberwolves have failed to qualify for the playoffs the last 11 years.
Three years ago, the Timberwolves’ owner, Glen Taylor, decided not to give Love a max-contract; instead, the team signed him to a four-year extension. That decision ultimately created division between the team and its prized star, who started in the 2014 All-Star game.
Timberwolves owner Glen Taylor admitted it was a mistake. “Obviously right now, as you look at it, it was the wrong decision that was made at that time. We should have given it to him. He played better than what we thought. I guess those were the risks we took. We made the wrong decision, and we’ll have to live with it,” Taylor said.
The Timberwolves have had talks with several teams — Golden State, Chicago and Cleveland — about potential deals for Love. Taylor confirmed the deal will be with Cleveland.
However, the trade can’t take place between the two teams before August 23, because Cleveland’s number-one pick Andrew Wiggins’ rookie contract was recently signed. The Timberwolves have demanded that Wiggins must be a part of any trade to get Love.
Wiggins told his ex-college coach Bill Self of Kansas over the weekend he wants to be traded to Minnesota. He wants to carve out his own legacy in the NBA. But by rule in all NBA rookie contracts, the player must be with the team that drafted and signed him for 30 days before that player can be traded.
Taylor, when asked what this ordeal has been like having a franchise player, an All-Star like Love, tell you he does not want to be here, said, “I think it’s disappointing, but more so for the fans. The fans voted Kevin in as an All-Star starter this year. They stuck behind Kevin. They appreciated him. It’s disappointing.”
Taylor continued: “Yes, he [Kevin] wants to play on a winner. I want a winner. We all want winners. But what we are putting in place here is a chance to play on a winning team. Sure, LeBron James is a special person, and to play with him is special. I realize that.
“As I said, it’s discouraging, but our thoughts are we are going to deal with what we have. I think we are going to have an exciting team this year, and hopefully we can get ourselves in the playoffs,” Taylor said.
Larry Fitzgerald can be heard weekday mornings on KMOJ Radio 89.9 FM at 8:25 am, on WDGY-AM 740 Monday-Friday at 12:17 pm and 4:17 pm, and at www.Gamedaygold.com. He also commentates on sports 7-8 pm on Almanac (TPT channel 2). Follow him on Twitter at FitzBeatSr. Larry welcomes reader responses to [email protected], or visit www.Larry-Fitzgerald.com.