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Will loss of Love light fire under sleeping Wolves?

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Having an NBA team is quite a perk for professional basketball fans in this state but you have to wonder what it will take to make them playoff-caliber.

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Is it too harsh to point out the Minnesota Timberwolves have not qualified for post-season play for 10 years?

Having one of the NBA's top players has not been enough. Kevin Love wants a new team. Six seasons with the Timberwolves have the 6-10 power forward completely fed up. The Wolves hold all the cards at this point so look for Love somewhere else by next season.

Is it so hard to understand that a professional athlete might want to win? If a team can cut a player because they are not living up to expectations, why can't a player tell a team to take a jump because they refuse go after the talent they need to sell post-season tickets?

The Wolves have been improving bit-by-bit for the last five seasons but they have not posted a winning record since the 2004-2005 season and they have not made the playoffs since winning the Midwest Division in 2004 when they had guys like Kevin Garnett, Latrell Sprewell and Sam Cassell.

The Wolves were third in the National Basketball Association in scoring with Love in uniform last season. Love averaged 26 points a game making him the NBA's fourth-leading scorer behind Kevin Durant, Carmelo Anthony and LeBron James. He was also the NBA's third-leading rebounder averaging 12.5 a game behind DeAndre Jordan and Andre Drummond.

Okay, the Wolves were one of the NBA's best scoring teams, so what was wrong? Quite simply, they lacked the defensive chops to make the playoffs. The Wolves allowed 104.3 points a game and ranked 26th in the 30-team NBA defensively.

Retread Head Coach Flip Saunders went after a point guard and a small forward with his first two picks in the NBA draft last week, grabbing UCLA's Sean LaVine, reputed to be the best athlete in the 2014 draft, to play point and Michigan's Glenn Robinson for a small forward spot.

With Love heading out the door you might think Saunders would have selected a power forward but he did not. The reason could be that he is already on an NBA roster. He could also be playing his final season for a major college team and be headed for Minnesota in the 2015 draft. The Wolves can really stock the shelves if they pull off the right kind of trade. It is almost a cinch that the Love trade, when it is made, will be one of the biggest ever by a Minnesota pro sports franchise.

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