There is one NBA player who has to be disappointed that the calendar flipped to April — Minnesota’s Kevin Love. Love was the best player in the NBA in the month of March, as he filled up the stat sheet with numbers that are not often seen. In March alone Love averaged over 30 points per game, nearly 14 rebounds, and he shot 46 percent from the field while playing over 40 minutes per game. Not to mention, despite the Timberwolves dealing with a myriad of injuries, they have remained in striking distance of the final playoff spot in the Western Conference because of him. It’s hard to make a case that a player on a non-playoff team belongs in the MVP conversation, but Love does. Not only has he emerged as the best power forward in the NBA but this season the third-year player has become an unstoppable force.
Kevin Love joined The Dan Patrick Show to talk about whether Kentucky could beat the Charlotte Bobcats or Washington Wizards, the number of shots he has been taking lately, what he would say to people that believe he is only putting up big numbers because the Timberwolves are a bad team, who he thinks the best team in the Western Conference is, and whether he believes he is an MVP candidate.
If Kentucky could beat the Bobcats or the Wizards:
“It would never happen. They would get blown out by both teams, Bobcats or Wizards. They do have a great team, they haven’t won the National Championship yet, they’re well coached by (John) Calipari and have a lot of great one-and-dones, but that’s just something that would never happen.”
On the volume of shots he has been taking lately:
“The first thing I’m icing down in the locker room is definitely my shoulder but with guys like JJ Barea out, Nikola Pekovic, Michael Beasley, and we know Ricky (Rubio) is out as well, so with those type of guys out I have to put up a pretty decent volume of shots. All were in the rhythm of the offense and it’s quality over quantity I guess.”
What he makes of people saying he is only putting up numbers because someone has to score on a bad team:
“I think people are ridiculous. There have been bad teams where people have put up numbers but not quiet numbers like this and we’re winning this year. Last year you definitely could’ve said that and had an argument that was warranted but this year we’re knocking at the door of the playoffs, on the outside looking in still, but we could have a good run here these last 14 games and eventually make the eight seed. Really we’re four or five games out of the fourth spot so we’re looking to just keep winning games. When people say that I don’t listen to it. They just don’t know what they’re talking about.”
What he would say to Andrew Bynum about improving his three-point range as a big man:
“Not that he needs to hear it from me but I would tell his butt to stay close to the basket because that’s where he makes his money. That’s where he makes his money and that’s where I’d stay if I were him. 7-1 and that big, yeah I’d stay in the paint.”
On the best team in the West:
“Oklahoma City without a question. I think obviously you have the reigning champs with the Dallas Mavericks, you have a team that is older but still effective in San Antonio, the Lakers with those big fellas in there with (Pau) Gasol and Bynum and always Kobe Bryant so they’re going to be scary come postseason play but I think the best team in the West is the Oklahoma City Thunder. Plain and simple.”
Whether he belongs in the MVP conversation:
“I think if we make the playoffs then it’s a legitimate conversation to have but as far as right now it’s really tough to say. I look at guys like Kobe Bryant, I look at guys like LeBron James and especially with what Kevin Durant is doing I think he is just taking his team above and beyond. Obviously Russell Westbrook is playing great, James Harden, Serge Ibaka, Kendrick Perkins, and guys off the bench that are playing great basketball so I think you really have to start off that conversation with Kevin.”