Minnesota Timberwolves star Kevin Love expressed his desire to play for a “winning team” and said that he will opt out of his contract at the end of next season on May 18. The question is now where could he land?
Love, a three-time All-Star, signed a four-year, $62 million contract in January 2012. However, he has an early-termination option that he may use to become an unrestricted free agent next season. Love averaged a career-best 26.1 points a game along with 12.6 rebounds and 4.4 assists last year.
According to sources, Love has stressed to the Timberwolves that he's desperate to get to a winning situation and that the constant losing has worn on him. Minnesota, which went 40-42 in 2013-14, has not made the playoffs with Love on the team.
Minnesota has nixed any deal for Love in the past but may not be to afford to, now with his intentions public.
The Timberwolves were $9.7 million over the salary cap last year and have over $66 million in guaranteed salaries next year. Dante Cunningham is an unrestricted free agent while rookie Robbie Hummel and Othyus Jeffers will be restricted free agents.
If Love does leave Minnesota, following the 2014-15 season, or is traded the Wolves will save $16.7 million in 2015-16. The Wolves would then just have two players under contract for the 2015-16 season as Chase Budinger has a $5 million player option and Corey Brewer has a option for $4.9 million. Minnesota has a team option on Shabazz Muhammed and Gorgui Deng while Ricky Rubio and Alexy Schved will be restricted free agents.
There are several teams interested in obtaining Love’s services including Golden State, Chicago, New York Knicks, Los Angeles Lakers, Houston, Boston and Phoenix.
The rest of the article will rank the top teams that will look to trade for Love and what they may offer Minnesota in return.