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Cue the report that Minnesota isn’t happy with Boston’s offer

Chuck - Red's Army June 18, 2014 Celtics News, Rumors 37 Comments

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Nearly 24 hours after the Internet was set on fire with a report that the Celtics had the best offer for Kevin Love, we’re learning there are “better offers” out there:

Sources close to the situation have told the Herald that Boston’s offer of draft picks and players isn’t nearly the best the Timberwolves have received — or expect to receive — for their All-Star forward.

The Celtics are willing to discuss a number of options, but none of them includes the quality of player with NBA experience that Minnesota is seeking or believes it can get elsewhere.

One source indicated Denver and Golden State have both made more intriguing offers, and there are other teams very much in the picture, as well. There have been conflicting reports on whether the Warriors would make Klay Thompson available, but the Wolves are said to be confident they can find a more than acceptable deal there.

And while Minnesota has certainly discussed trading Love, who, without a contract extension, can be an unrestricted free agent next summer, it’s also possible that Flip Saunders, the club’s coach and president of basketball operations, could choose to keep his best player a little longer. The thinking would be that either the Wolves improve and make Love want to stay or that a better deal will present itself before next season’s trade deadline.

At present, however, what the Celtics have to offer isn’t getting it done. According to a source, the first-round picks they own from the Nets are not seen as being of overwhelming value, and, where the Celts had an Al Jefferson to offer Minnesota for Kevin Garnett six years ago, neither Jared Sullinger nor Kelly Olynyk rises to that level in the Wolves’ eyes this time around.

As for the Celtics’ No. 6 overall pick, one NBA source has been told directly that Minnesota believes it can get a player of equal quality later in the first round. The Timberwolves hold the 13th pick, but multiple offers would allow them to select higher.

Welcome to Trade Negotiations 101. I guarantee Flip Saunders had a minion call Steve Bulpett with this story in an attempt to get Boston to up the offer.

Denver is intriguing because they could offer Kenneth Faried and Danilo Gallinari, but the key is Love agreeing to sign an extension with the Nuggets. Does Love really trust Denver’s front office to build a contender the way he apparently trusts Danny Ainge? Call me when Love spends a weekend in the Mile High City.

If Denver and Golden State were legit options, Minnesota would have made phone calls to the media saying those offers aren’t good enough. This is a clear cut attempt to squeeze more out of Danny Ainge.

I think Bill Simmons is right on the money:

Nice try, Flip. What else you got?

UPDATE: ESPN’s Chad Ford is skeptical of Denver offer:

I was told by a good source in Minnesota that as of Monday, the Celtics had the best offer on the table and were the favorites to land Love. I think Bill Simmons reported something similar today. I know the Boston Herald just said the opposite — that the Warriors and Nuggets had made better offers. But I’m skeptical. The Warriors won’t include Klay Thompson (at least not yet). And the Nuggets? They have the 11th pick. They have Kenneth Faried. But what else? Gallinari? Hickson? I don’t think that’s a better offer than the Celtics.

I think Boston is one of the three or four places Love would be happy to land. I think he’d re-sign.

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  • bill_nair

    Its better than GSW or CHI reported deals.

  • Brad P

    Faried and ACL torn Gallinari? And what picks do they have to offer?

    This Love saga has been hysterical

  • bill_nair

    And now Baxter Holmes is tweeting were not in the top 3 of Minnys prefered deals. He also tweeted no one knows what Minny wants so its hard to determine these things. Compared to Dwight and other recent deals Minny is getting a good haul no matter what team they choose.

    • CFH

      It’s Minny. They’ll manage to screw it up. They’re still moaning about getting robbed in the Garnett deal 7 years ago… when they were the ones who managed to waste that pick on Johnny Flynn and managed to ship Big Al (now all-NBA and deservedly so) out of town for peanuts. That did not have to be a bad deal for them.

      The quote about getting “equal quality later in the first round” cracks me up. Yeah, because they were never going to be able to pick the standout player in the first place. (Exceptions made for when Kevin McHale drafted other forwards named Kevin, of course.)

      • bill_nair

        Its funny cause I saw someone whos religiously against bringing Love here say Minny shouldnt trade for picks because they’ve been “unlucky”. Seriously?! Wesley Johnson (who im a huge fan of but shouldve never been taken ahead of Cousins or Monroe), Flynn than Rubio right after and trading their picks like they had no value. I agree, theyll mess this up.

      • adam

        Yeah they squandered all their draft picks on guards. i remember the media being like “what the hell is minny doing? another guard?”

  • swissflix

    The Wolves might just give it one more shot and look how the team does with Dieng, Love and Rubio together. If they are doing well in the playoff race by February, they might just keep it together. A good playoff run and a max offer could make sense to Love after all.

    • bill_nair

      I’d tend to agree but Flip has been doing everything in his power to burn this bridge. Love doesnt want to be there anymore dragging this out will be worse since Flip also has to coach the guy this season. Plus, this team hasnt won more than 40 games in a decade. I doubt with all the drama they can win the necessary 45+ it would take to sneak in.

      • swissflix

        But this is exactly what i would do if i was Saunders. I got to keep Love for at least a while and i could give the team another run. What if Dieng turns out to be the monster big he was in the last couple of games? They also have that scary serbian guy. It is really a decent team.

        • bill_nair

          I get where your coming from. Honestly I can see it happening cause I dont think Flips best interest is in the organization as a whole. Personally I say draft whoever they like at #6 and move forward with the rebuild.

          • swissflix

            i agree. Love is tempting but the price may be too high. I also think we can get a very good player with the 6th pick. Someone between 1-4 is going to screw up. Let Olynyk and Sully develop (and trade some body fat between the two of them by the way).

          • bill_nair

            I may have confused you. I meant Minny move on with the rebuild but im not entirely against us going that route. I want Love but if they want any of the BKN picks the discussions are over. Hell, Im not giving up #17 or KO.

          • swissflix

            Sorry, that must be my bad english. I agree with you on the Brooklyn picks. They are going to be pure gold as the Nets are about to implode, with or without Lopez.

  • eddysamson

    Lol Minnesota is stupid if they don’t think Sully or Olynyk are future stars.

    Dirk Nowitizki’s 98-99 rookie season averages: 8.2 pts, 3.4 rebounds, 1 assist, 0.6 blocks, 0.6 steals in 20 minutes per game with 40.5 % FG% and 20.6% from 3

    Kelly Olynyk’s 13-14 rookie season averages: 8.7 pts, 5.6 rebounds, 1.6 assists, 0.4 blocks, 0.5 steals in 20 minutes per game with 46.6% FG% and 35.1% from 3

    This is actually why I’d rather we trade Sully for Love if we’re going down that path.

    • eddysamson

      also worth noting Dirk immediately jumped up to 17.5 pts per game his second season, wonder what Olynyk has in store for us this year??

      • adam

        I don’t know if he will have 17.5 pts per game but I expect him to improve upon the 8.7 ppg I rather keep Kelly too. Reminds me of Dirk.

        • swissflix

          Olynyk’s scoring is worthless as long as he cannot defend. I don’t see him becoming a 14-18 points scorer as long as he does not have a steady mid range jump shot.

          • eddysamson

            So are you against pursuing Love for the same reasons? Does Olynyk’s D matter as much if we land Asik or someone similar? I feel like its an ignorant statement to say its WORTHLESS. If that was the case there would be a LOT of people without a job or a much less well paying job that are pure offensive players.

          • swissflix

            Sure it matters as much. In his case it matters because he has to defend bigs and they tend to score under the basket with high percentage shots. Who defends big players if your big cannot do it? Your point guard?
            I like Olynyk but i don’t understand why he should turn into Dirk 2.0. His shot is just not that good (yet).
            And people who think Asik is a true rim protector are ignorant. Dude’s very much overrated.

          • bill_nair

            I think Olynyk can be a poor mans Diaw (minus the defense). I think he can be a solid 1-on-1 defender but his real use comes in coming off the bench and running the offense and scoring. Love and KO passing would really be something to see.

          • swissflix

            Olynyk’s passing was the real deal actually! Kid’s creative and has a high basketball iq.

          • Curt Hays

            Did you read the piece about Diaw jumping as high as A’mare?…in his flip flops…

      • http://www.business-edge.com/Our%20Work/law_firm_web_design.asp matt delucia

        I have a feeling the holdup is flip wants Kelly and Danny said no. As he should.

  • RedsLoveChild

    This is becoming a “pissing contest”.

    They know we desperately want Love…we know they desperately need to unload Love…it`s a question of who blinks first.

    • bill_nair

      Yup just looks like posturing by Flip. I wonder what the deal would/does look like in the end. I doubt its 3+ picks, both picks this year and both Sully/KO. IMO, Flip seems to be hurting himself rather than helping. Danny knows a fleecing when he see’s one. He wont get played.

      • LA Flake

        If I were Danny, I’d pull out of this conversation with Minny and focus on the draft. That’ll force Flip to look elsewhere and he’ll eventually panic because there’s no way he can get a better deal from anyone else. And just when he’s getting desperate, he’ll either contact us first or I’ll subtly restart the conversation and LOWER my offer – less picks, less players, etc.

        Flip is cornered. He has no choice. Force his hand, Danny!

        • bill_nair

          Yup, wouldnt be a bad idea to just move on with #6 and look towards other options (for now). I just worry that hurts our position down the road too. If they dont move him now they’re gonna get a pretty bad deal when you look back at it.

          • LA Flake

            Yeah, the draft is looking pretty damn deep, so it’ll be hard for Danny to screw it up.

            I don’t worry about hurting our position down the road with Love. Flip’s gonna end up looking at a list of terrible to horrible options once we pull out of this discussion. The key here is for Danny to really sell him on the idea that we’re just not going to give up what they’re asking for Love and that we’re excited about the draft.

            Flip’s not gonna give Love away. He’s gonna come crawling back to us.

  • Rich Jensen

    Between #6, #17 and a first round pick next year you are not going to get a player as good as Love. It’s just not happening. And the Celtics have more picks than they need as it is. Think about it: They potentially have six first rounders in the next three years.

    That’s not ‘a lot’, that’s ‘too many’. As in, you don’t need all those picks and this is why you stockpile them–so you can trade some of them while retaining enough for your own use.

    I don’t think that the C’s should give up FOUR first rounders AND Sully or KO–but I’d be willing to support four picks, period, or three and one of those two (along with Bass and players that deserve to be called filler). I do not think the C’s should take on K-Mart’s contract when they’re already dealing with Wallace’s.

    • Curt Hays

      Yeah, people keep forgetting about Wallace. Love the guys, we can use him, but he is overpaid. @jerrysondler:disqus said that Love is not a transcendent player, and I tend to agree. But he could turn this club around completely. Do you think this is the smartest pursuit for us this season?

      • Rich Jensen

        Put this way: How often does a chance like this come along? Boston accumulated assets to acquire players who cannot be drafted or signed via free agency, and that fits this situation to a T.

        Regarding ‘transcendence’, let’s see what he does with a good coach before we write the book on his entire career.

        • Curt Hays

          That’s a similar answer to mine. Thanks for sharing!

  • Luke Walton

    guarantee?

  • romeo0119

    So if we dont trade and keep the picks, who is projected at 6? Who would you draft?

    Aaron Gordon or Julius Randle or Marcus Smart?

    I personally like Randle.

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