But since we’re only at the beginning stages of what’s sure to be a long summer of speculation and rumors surrounding the Minnesota Timberwolves star, we’ll begin with the few reported by ESPN’s Marc Stein and Ramona Shelburne:
The Los Angeles Lakers and New York Knicks have likewise been mentioned all season as big-market landing spots that would tempt Love, but going to the best situation for immediate contention is said to be the power forward's priority.
Sources say that the Phoenix Suns, armed with several draft assets to offer Minnesota, also have strong interest in trading for Love, but the 25-year-old's interest in joining the Suns is unclear.
That's a fifth of the league right there, and that list doesn't include the Boston Celtics, who Stein and Shelburne also mention as a team loaded with appealing draft picks to deal.
There have been rumblings here and there for years about Love's unhappiness in Minnesota, starting around the time the Wolves refused to offer him a fifth year on the max deal he signed in January 2012. Since then, the Timberwolves have played disappointing ball, bungled a few draft picks and done little to prove they're in the process of building a winner.
Back in December of 2012, Love addressed some of owner Glen Taylor's surprising comments, which showed the depth of the developing divide.
"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 told Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports. "I mean, it's not like I had much support out there.'
The discord in Minnesota has been a badly kept secret for some time, so it's no surprise we're hearing rumblings now. The Wolves need a new coach and just missed the playoffs—making it six consecutive postseason absences for Love. Plus, Love's contract allows him to become a free agent after the 2014-15 season, so the Wolves now have an incentive to move him in an effort to avoid losing him for nothing.
We know all that, though.
What we don't know is where Love will wind up if traded.
Golden State is an exciting destination, with loads of talent and enough intriguing assets (David Lee, Harrison Barnes and/or Klay Thompson, to name three) to pull something off. And with the added pressure of winning big under new head coach Steve Kerr, perhaps the Dubs will be extra motivated to swing a deal.
At any rate, pairing Love with Stephen Curry is kind of a no-brainer.
Rest assured, we'll continue to hear rumors spilling out and trade chatter heating up for the next few months. The only question now is: What do we call this hazy period in Love's history?
The Summer of Love? Already taken. A Love Story? Too cheesy.
Yep, that'll do.
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