If the Minnesota Timberwolves‘ season was to be labeled with one of those sentimental home-furnished signs, it would say “Sadness, Sickness, and Despair” rather than “Faith, Hope, and Love”. Still, the Wolves do have faith and hope in their superstar Kevin Love to help bring them back from the bottom of the NBA going into next year.
While Love is the most important piece in place other than point guard Ricky Rubio, he is not the only one to have been dealing with injuries this season. Center Nikola Pekovic, forward Andrei Kirilenko, guard Brandon Roy and guard Chase Budinger have all been out either sporadically or for the majority of the season for the Wolves. Rubio also made a late start to his season after coming back from surgery to repair his torn ACL.
The Wolves are counting on a healthy Love next year as they look to make a run at what they were supposed to be aiming for this season: the NBA Playoffs. With Love in the lineup, Minnesota has much more balance across the floor offensively.
Love can score from outside or from the interior, being as versatile as power forwards come these days. He has also established himself as a rebounding machine, consistently staying towards the top of the league in that category when at full health.
Minnesota is still unsure if Love will return this year. If he plays it out the way it is and chooses to sit out and come back next season stronger and healthier than before, I could see the Wolves doing some damage in the West, especially if they go out and grab themselves a proven wing player.
Love gives them the best chance to succeed, and they will surely need him back if any chance at the playoffs were to be feasible in the coming year.