Nov 16, 2013; Minneapolis, MN, USA; Minnesota Timberwolves power forward Kevin Love (42) drives to the basket past Boston Celtics power forward Kris Humphries (43) in the second half at Target Center. The TImberwolves won 106-88. Mandatory Credit: Jesse Johnson-USA TODAY Sports

Minnesota Timberwolves Playing Hardball With The Boston Celtics

Ah, Minnesota!

The Timberwolves must really hate the Boston Celtics.  First, the Celtics did in one season what Minnesota couldn’t do in, um, ever: help Kevin Garnett win an NBA Championship.

Now, the Celtics are trying to lure another All-Star power forward named Kevin over to Titletown: Kevin Love, the latest franchise player to figure out that he will never win a ring playing for the Timberwolves.  And from the sounds of it, the Minnesota Timberwolves are not going to make this easy on the Boston Celtics.

First, Minnesota president of basketball operations and newly-annointed head coach Flip Saunders dismissed Love’s recent trip to Boston as merely a vacation, and reminded Boston Celtics fans of another power forward that they wish they had been able to land – Tim Duncan:

“The last I knew Kevin was under contract with us, and I expect him to be playing for us next year,” Saunders said Sunday after a workout of draft prospects. “I don’t really dictate where guys go on vacation or what they do. They can go wherever they want to go. . . 

“I know there’s a feeding frenzy out there from a lot of teams,” Saunders said. “Unfortunately, they have no say. I plan on Kevin being here.”

“They’re [Boston Celtics fans] the same fans who thought they had Tim Duncan,” he joked. “They still think they got Tim Duncan in the draft. I’m not really sure, but the last I looked he was playing for San Antonio, Old Man Riverwalk.”

Then, the Timberwolves announced that they were not impressed with what the Celtics had to offer for love:

The Celtics could offer their sixth overall pick along with their seventeenth overall pick this year and a future Brooklyn pick in which they own from the Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett trade. The Celtics would also throw in a combination of Jeff Green, Jared Sullinger, Kelly Olynyk, and Brandon Bass.

Apparently, the sixth overall pick is not too amusing for Minnesota, which may also throw the Los Angeles Lakers out of any possible trade since their offer would involve their seventh overall pick.

The Timberwolves claim they already have fielded a better offer from the Chicago Bulls, who can offer draft picks and a combination of Jimmy Butler and Taj Gibson along with Carlos Boozer and his $16.8 million contract which expires next season. Boozer’s expiring contract would create a lot of cap space for the Timberwolves next season, and that is something that they really crave.

Clearly, Minnesota is in no hurry to deal yet another franchise player to Boston, or at least are going to make damn sure that Boston coughs up one hell of an offer to land the All-Star.

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