Kevin Love's brief visit to Boston fueled recent speculation that he could be doing some recon on a potential trade destination. Given the Celtics' interest in surrounding point guard Rajon Rondo with some star power, the conjecture made some sense.
But general manager Danny Ainge first has to get the Minnesota Timberwolves' attention with an offer they'd actually entertain.
That isn't yet the case according to the Boston Herald's Steve Bulpett: "Sources close to the situation have told the Herald that Boston's offer of draft picks and players isn’t nearly the best the Timberwolves have received—or expect to receive—for their All-Star forward."
Per Bulpett, "One source indicated Denver and Golden State have both made more intriguing offers, and there are other teams very much in the picture, as well."
Given Timberwolves president Flip Saunders' reluctance to part ways with Love, it's no surprise that the organization is looking to maximize its returns on any potential deal.
In May, ESPN.com's Marc Stein and Ramona Shelburne noted, "Two sources told the AP that the likely asking price would include a high first-round pick in this year's draft and a veteran or two who could bring immediate leadership to a team that lacks it.
Stein and Shelburne also raised another variable that could impact trade discussions: Love's own preferences. They wrote, "Sources told ESPN.com that the Golden State Warriors and Chicago Bulls are among the potential trade destinations that intrigue Love."
Though Love can't directly dictate where he's traded, he can either agree or refuse to sign an extension with Minnesota's prospective trade partner. His willingness to do so could affect that partner's willingness to make a deal in the first place. Few teams would be interested in losing substantial talent for the right to merely rent Love for one season.
Recently, Love's own comments have raised an additional possibility.
According to ESPNNewYork.com's Ohm Youngmisuk Love told ESPN's SportsNation, "I think anytime you have Phil Jackson involved with any organization, you're going to definitely look at it. And you know it's very intriguing. The Knicks are a place where I think anybody would like to go."
Of course, the Knicks would have a difficult time assembling an attractive trade package given the club's lack of assets. If the Celtics' proposal isn't turning heads, it's hard to imagine Jackson putting together a more impressive option.
With Love's situation promising to cloud Minnesota's season with distraction, movement could happen sooner rather than later. No one wants to see this situation drag on indefinitely.
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