Kevin Love Is Dominating the Paint, Can Anyone Stop Him?
Kevin Love does not jump the highest, he does not run the fastest or move the quickest. That has not stopped him from being the most dominant rebounder in the NBA in this very early stretch of the season. He has pulled down 14.6 rebounds per game by creating space in the paint with his bulky frame.
It was not long ago that Love was coming off the bench for the Minnesota Timberwolves and now he is the second coming of Moses Malone. His 31 rebound, 31 point game on Friday night against the Knicks still has the league buzzing. I have never seen a player rebound the ball the way Kevin Love did in that game.
He positioned himself for every rebound and fought hard as the shot came off the rim. He used his hands to grab loose balls that tipped off other players' hands.
Kevin Love was not alive the last time a player scored over 30 points and grabbed 30 boards. Love's name is now alongside names like Moses Malone and Robert Parrish, who also accomplished the achievement.
For Timberwolves fans, this stretch of games brings visions of what could be possible as Love develops. On Tuesday, the game before the 31-rebound game, Love pulled down 24 against Pau Gasol and the Lakers' front line. He also backed up those performances with a 17-rebound game against the Hawks.
Even more impressive than his nearly 15 rebounds per game is that he gets over 25 percent of the possible rebounds while he is on the court. That stat is a true example of the dominance that Kevin Love has provided the Wolves on the glass this season.
If you do the simple math, there are 10 players on the court. That means each player should have a 10 percent chance of getting the rebound, and Love has managed to get a quarter of those rebounds this season.
As a kid, Love wanted to be a football player. His dad, who was playing in the NBA at the time, told Love that he could use his size and physicality in basketball. Fast forward to today, and Kevin has learned to play a style in the post that is sure to make his pops proud.
He is the example for perfect rebounding form. He puts his body into his man, seals him off and does whatever it takes to get his hands on the ball. When he comes down with the ball, he has it gripped tightly in both hands.
It's what they teach kids at basketball camps around the country. There is nobody rebounding the ball as well as Kevin Love has been. At only 22 years old, Kevin Love will have a long time in this league to perfect his rebounding skill. It is not completely out of the question that he can't achieve the same feat a few more times over his career.
We have known that he could be good, but now we may have a 21st century Moses Malone watch for the next decade or more.
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