Breaking News to Pippen Ain’t Easy! The Chicago Bulls want Kevin Love! Well so does everyone else including the team he currently plays for, the Minnesota Timberwolves. Ever since Kevin Love reportedly told the Timberwolves that he was not going to sign an extension after the season, RRRRRRRIIIIINNGGGGG!!!! The phones have been ringing off the hook from every team in the NBA it seems.
Minnesota desperately wants to keep Kevin Love. Kevin Love desperately wants out of Minnesota so that means the Timberwolves are going to have to make a deal so they can get some assets for the future albeit players, draft picks, financial relief, you know the deal. There are a lot of issues that have to be worked out starting with the owner Glen Taylor. He does not want to let Kevin Love go. Whether its denial or delusion, Glen Taylor should be used to this by now. Check out some of the players that he has had issues with around contract time.
Remember when Kevin Garnett got that huge 126 million dollar contract from the Timberwolves? Seems like a lifetime ago doesn’t it. Well that contract led to a work stoppage back in 1998 based on the league’s salary cap and ceilings to player salaries. After the strike was over Marbury couldn’t command as much money based on the collective bargaining agreement at the time. Marbury rebelled and forced a trade to the New Jersey Nets.
The one thing about this guy was he was loyal and earned every bit of the money in that huge contract. He gave his heart and soul to Minnesota. No doubt about it. But we all should remember that interview he had with Mr. Bill Russell when he broke down crying saying…”I just want to win man.” It was painfully obvious that wasn’t going to happen in Minnesota. Eventually he was traded to Boston and he won his title.
Sigh. This still gets me to this day. Remember when the Timberwolves offered him that three-year 21 million dollar contract? Remember when he turned it down? I know you remember the famous phrase, “I got a family to feed.” Now he’s reportedly bankrupt and still has that family to feed.
The point here is this, Kevin Love should be gone quicker than Carlos Boozer. That is IF the Timberwolves are smart or in touch with reality at this point. Based on these three valuable players (including Sprewell, the Timberwolves had playoff success with him) Love has checked out.
There are two different teams that have allegedly become the leaders in the clubhouse for a deal for Love. They are the Boston Celtics and the Chicago Bulls. Both have sent proposed packages that are reputable. The word around the campfire is that the Bulls have a better deal in place than Boston along with other scenarios. Let’s go over Boston’s package.
It is to be noted that according to Jackie McMullan of ESPNBoston.com there is a soap opera that goes with all of this…
1) Glen Taylor still has not gotten over the Garnett trade that led the Celtics to the championship. (Would you? The Timberwolves still haven’t sniffed the playoffs since.)
2) Some of Kevin McHale’s friends think Flip Saunders undermined him in his last days at Minnesota. Like that illegal contract negotiation with Joe Smith along with the fact that the Timberwolves record was terrible had nothing to do with it.
3) When Doc Rivers hired Flip Saunders as a “postseason consultant” (where do these guys get these jobs?) there were no real interaction between Ainge and Saunders. I mean who gets along with Danny Ainge anyway?
Unsolicited advice from Pippen Ain’t Easy… Watch how you treat people in business, you never know if you might need them in the future.
If what Jackie says is true. Boston might not be able to swing a deal. But if they do, here’s what they can offer…
Two first round picks in this draft (No.6 and 17).
Lottery protected 2015 first round pick from 76ers (if Philadelphia misses the playoffs, it becomes two second rounders.)
2015 Clippers first round pick.
2016 Nets first round pick.
The higher pick of their own and the Nets’ 2017 first round pick.
2018 Nets first round pick.
Boston could offer a combination of these picks with Joel Anthony, Keith Bogans, Chris Johnson and either Phil Pressey or Chris Babb to match salaries. Outside of Anthony who makes 3.8 million everyone else can be waived immediately.
Minnesota gets: A ton of financial relief and a press conference explaining why Kevin Love wasn’t given away for a box of Newports and Puma sweats and if they will be as bad as Philadelphia was last year.
Chicago has a great package to send as well.
Two first round picks in this draft (No.16 and 19).
Top ten protected pick from the Sacramento Kings between 2015 and 2017.
The higher pick of their own and Cleveland’s 2015 first round pick (as long as the Cavaliers fall out of the lottery.)
Nikola Mirotic’ rights.
Carlos Boozer’ expiring 16.8 million dollar contract. Boozer’s contract matches up the salaries.
Here’s the situation. Let’s just say that Bulls have a better package than the Celtics. Kevin Love says sure and the trade is made on let’s say draft night. Has everyone overlooked something? Kevin Love is a free agent after this year.
If the Bulls make this trade, BOY it had better work. I have stated over and over that the Bulls can’t mortgage their future for a big splash free agent. Jimmy Butler and Taj Gibson were important cogs in the future of the Chicago Bulls. Gibson is a budding star if he continues to work on his game like he did last year. Nikola Mirotic is a guy that was the justification of Luol Deng trade last year remember? The draft picks were all from the Deng trade last year remember?
Remember what happened to the Lakers a couple of years ago? They made the trade for Dwight Howard thinking they could back up the Brinks truck to resign him. Howard went to LA found out Kobe is not nice, the sun shines too much, somebody kicked his dog, found some of Stan Van Gundy’s friends, then somebody talked about his baby pictures and he left for Houston. This past season the Lakers suffered their worst season in their storied history. Pippen Peoples that’s saying a lot.
Speaking of Brinks trucks, the Bulls are going to pay the guy right? I’m going out on a limb and say that the Bulls will wisely NOT give Kevin Love the max deal and rightfully so. If LeBron James is not getting max dollars, no one should. But they still have to deal with paying Derrick Rose 20 million in 2015-16 and how about Joakim Noah? After coming into his own this year, he’s going to cash out in 2016. After paying these guys, got any money left to pay the other players? Or are you going to pay Mike James…again.
If the Chicago Bulls make this deal, it needs to be a sign and trade. Love needs to be locked up for the future. It is not worth the gamble to give all these assets up for a guy that is not guaranteed to be around for a while. In my opinion, I really think Kevin Love covets the Los Angeles Lakers. Plus I think the Lakers are quietly positioning themselves to make a run.
Think I’m playing? How many people saw the Shaquille O’Neal signing back in the 90’s? I’ll wait. The same scenario is coming around again. The Lakers have only two or three players under contract with a ton of cap space. If the can find a sucker…I mean suitor to take Steve Nash off their hands the situation looks sweeter.
Pippen Ain’t Easy will be investigating this Kevin Love saga leading up to draft night which I think everything will go down. Keep it locked to Pippen Ain’t Easy for the best choice for Bulls news previews and reviews.