Minnesota power forward Kevin Love said he would consider leaving the Timberwolves… (Hannah Foslien / Associated…)
Kevin Love probably isn't bound for a job in public relations or political spin control once his basketball career is over.
The Minnesota Timberwolves power forward was brutally honest this week in an interview with Yahoo Sports about a variety of issues related to his rebuilding franchise.
Love said he wasn't happy about getting a four-year contract in January instead of a maximum five-year deal. He intimated that teammate Ricky Rubio was the Timberwolves' franchise player in the eyes of management. He even suggested that the team had no direction with its annual roster makeovers.
"You walk into the locker room every year, and it's completely turned over," Love told Yahoo Sports. "There's new guys everywhere. And then it happens again and again. You start to wonder: Is there really a plan here? Is there really any kind of a … plan?"
In the revelation that may have sent the Timberwolves into the biggest tizzy, Love said he may seek a new employer if his team hasn't made the playoffs by the time he can opt out of his contract in two years.
Love later said he didn't regret his comments, only that they had gone public.
Note to Kevin: Tape recorders and notepads are generally a pretty reliable tipoff that what you say isn't going to stay between you and the reporter.
It's geek to him
Score another one for the stat heads.
John Hollinger, who could be considered the NBA's equivalent of Bill James, was hired by the Memphis Grizzlies as vice president of basketball operations.
Hollinger formulated the Player Efficiency Rating that attempts to measure player performance and was one of the leading proponents of the league's increasing reliance on statistical analysis.
The former ESPN.com columnist estimated that two-thirds of NBA teams have invested in his area of expertise after years of shunning the number crunchers.
"Teams employed analytics people they wouldn't even mention in their directory for fear of ridicule," Hollinger wrote of the old mind-set. "In less than a decade, teams have reversed course. Now, if anything, many try to promote how much they're doing with analytics."
Smoother air ahead?
Kobe Bryant and Smush Parker, reunited at 35,000 feet?
OK, probably not.
But the longtime enemies had a common bond this week after Parker signed with Cibona Zagreb, a professional team based in Croatia.
Turkish Airlines, which has an endorsement deal with Bryant, is also one of the advertisers on Cibona's website and sponsors a team blog.
Bryant and Parker waged an epic war of words in October, with Bryant saying the Lakers let his onetime teammate walk on and Parker firing back that Bryant "never made an attempt to develop any kind of friendship with any of his teammates."
Maybe the airline that touts itself as "Globally Yours" can sponsor an international peace accord by offering the duo side-by-side first-class tickets to the destination of their choice.
— Ben Bolch