Kevin Love: Is It in the Best Interest of the Timberwolves to Trade Him?

Dan RenfroCorrespondent IIIMay 24, 2011

Kevin Love was impressive last season. Still, the Minnesota Timberwolves would be better off without him.
Kevin Love was impressive last season. Still, the Minnesota Timberwolves would be better off without him.Elsa/Getty Images

First thing is first, Kevin Love was the Minnesota Timberwolves' best player last season.

That being said, the Wolves should trade him this offseason.

By no means is Love the biggest problem on the Wolves roster, but if the Wolves want to return to the playoffs, they will be better off without him.

He was great last season. In another dismal season for the Wolves, Love broke one of the most impressive streaks (consecutive double-doubles) in modern basketball. Still, he had almost three times as many consecutive double-doubles as the Wolves had wins.

That's embarrassing.

If Love is performing at his highest level and the team continues to lose, how are the Wolves supposed to win any games if he isn't performing at his highest level?

Fact is, by trading him this offseason, the Wolves would be much better off in the future.

After his fantastic season, his stock is really high. A lot of teams could use a rebounder, and if Love played for another team, he could strictly focus on rebounding.

Since his stock is so high, many middle-tier teams would probably be willing to give up a decent player along with a decent pick. If the Wolves were able to obtain another mid-first rounder, it would allow them to part with the number two overall pick easier.

They could trade the No. 2 overall for another player and a future first-round pick.

In doing so, the Wolves would be able to add multiple NBA players to strengthen their roster for next season, as well as have the opportunity to draft multiple players that could become stars.

If the Wolves were able to turn Love and their number two overall into two decent players (Josh Smith? Andre Iguodala?), then Love would be servicing the team more than he ever could while staying.

When it comes to Love's talent, he is a hard-worker and good rebounder, but he isn't much else.

On a bad team, he can score. When open, he can knock down jumpers.

Still, his offensive abilities have a low ceiling, for he is undersized and not extremely athletic.

As for defense, I have yet to see him play it. Most times, he chooses not to defend. Other times, he tries to defend, which is even more painful to watch.

At the end of the day, Love is a solid player that some people mistake to be a great player. The Wolves need to take advantage of that misconception while they can.

With all that said, I'm not arguing that Love is a bad player. On the right contender, he could contribute to a championship; however, he simply doesn't facilitate the Wolves' chances of being competitive.

If you look at the remaining playoff teams, the only one the Wolves could emulate (within the next 10 years) would be the Chicago Bulls.

By becoming a hard-nosed, defensive-minded basketball teams, the Wolves could actually sneak into the playoffs. If they find a superstar, they could even win a series or two.

But let's not get ahead of ourselves.

Love is not a hard-nosed defender. While he battles for rebounds, his inability to stop opponents defensively hinders the Wolves.

If the Wolves ever want to start defending, they need to get rid of Love.

Rather than try to accumulate multiple stars (i.e., Miami Heat), the Wolves' best interest would be to become a strong defensive team that terrorizes opponents night in and night out.

Trading Love would allow that to happen.

Therefore, Love's stock is high, and many people have him overrated. Consequently, the Wolves could deal him for a higher value than his true worth.

In doing so, the Wolves could obtain players that would better suit their needs (defense, defense and a little more defense).

Therefore, by trading Love, the Timberwolves would be making a big step to becoming a legitimate playoff contender.