The Kevin Love sweepstakes have officially begun. After Kevin Love told the Minnesota Timberwolves that he was not going to re-sign when his contract is up a year from now, the list of possible suitors piled up in a hurry. The Wolves now have recently decided that they were not going to trade Love until after the 2014 NBA draft. With that in mind, the NBA draft lottery tonight should draw a big crowd as it should have a big impact on where Love could end up.
With the Chicago Bulls and Golden State Warriors emerging early as favorite possible destinations for Love, the draft position for each team interested should have one of the biggest sways in who will end up getting him. The Bulls and Warriors in particular will probably not get much love-no pun intended- from the ping pong draft gods, but they do have the veteran talent the Wolves long for. Both teams also have the opportunity to win right away, which Kevin Love longs for. A deal with either of them would make both parties happy; however, big trades do not always satisfy the needs and wants of all parties involved.
Of the other possible trade destinations, the Boston Celtics and Los Angeles Lakers have the best odds at getting a top three draft pick, another Minnesota want in exchange for Kevin Love. If the Celtics get a top three pick in the NBA draft lottery, they will turn into a huge player in the Love sweepstakes. The Celtics would have a top pick among their already plentiful stockpile as well as a combination of young talent that can make an immediate impact for Minnesota. Like the Celtics, if the Lakers claim a top three pick, Los Angeles would be buzzing immediately in the potential of bringing Love back to his college home.
There is one more team that appears to be a below the surface player: the Phoenix Suns. The Phoenix Suns have a 0.05 percent chance of getting ping pong ball love and the top spot in the NBA draft lottery tonight, but it is their combination of young talent, stockpiled draft picks and opportunity to win immediately that will keep them in the conversation. The list of suitors for Love will certainly be cut down soon enough as teams will only trade for him if he guarantees to sign a long-term extension. So that raises a few questions that Kevin Love will have to answer sooner rather than later as the draft is set for June 20.
For the Bulls and Warriors, they have but one question to ask Love: do you want the highest possibility of winning a championship right now? The Bulls and Warriors are the only two teams listed above to even make the postseason. For Celtics and Lakers, they could ask: wouldn’t you want to become a part of our storied franchises? The Lakers and Celtics both have talent to win and Kevin Love could just be the key piece in making a big run. For the Phoenix Suns: do you like to golf? The Suns just barely missed the playoffs, but their system under Coach Jeff Hornacek would welcome Kevin Love with wide-open arms and make them an immediate contender… plus Phoenix has tons of golf courses.
No matter who wins in the Kevin Love sweepstakes in the end, as the ping pong balls rattle around in tonight’s NBA draft lottery, all of the possible trade destinations for Love will be watching.
Please feel free to agree or disagree with what you have read above and be sure to comment below!
Commentary by Ryne Vyles