Photo - Jared Wickerham (Getty Images)
By: Aj Mansour | KFAN.com
Minneapolis, MN - It's come to the point in the Kevin Love saga that fans are drawing a line in the sand. With the assumed outcome ultimately landing Kevin Love in a location somewhere outside of the state of Minnesota, there are mixed opinions about who to blame for the downfall of the situation.
Some may blame the former president of basketball operations David Kahn for his lack of foresight when it comes to writing up Kevin's current contract. Others blame Glen Taylor, owner of the team for hamstringing the team's budget and having too much of a presence within the basketball ops room. And then some blame Kevin Love, mainly for the poor way that he has handled the situation with public appearances in Boston and staying silent while rumors continue to swirl on the home front.
While there is surely enough blame to pass around to all parties involved, current president of basketball operations and newly named head coach Flip Saunders made one thing abundantly clear late last week during a radio appearance with Dan Barreiro on KFAN 100.3FM. The topic at hand, does Kevin Love have a right to be frustrated with what has transpired here in Minnesota during his tenure?
"No," Saunders flatly told Barreiro on Friday. "It's just like I told [Kevin] Garnett, he didn't have a right to be frustrated. Why does any player have the right to be frustrated? You're either part of the problem or part of the solution."
Now in his groove and irregularly candid, Saunders then took a trip down memory lane, recalling a story from the first time he served as head coach of the Timberwolves.
"I tell a story," Saunders recollected. "We were in the locker room when KG was in like his third year in the league, and Sam Mitchell was sitting in the locker room. KG was in there, and we had lost a couple games, and we were all sitting there talking. KG started going, 'Hey, you've got to start doing more.' And he's talking to some of the bench guys. 'You've got to start doing more.' And Sam said, 'Hey, hold it, hold it. Let me tell you something. You're making all the money. Hey, it's your responsibility. You make the money, you've got to live up to that.' So, that was the mentality, and from that time, KG never ever from that point, he always took responsibility."
That responsibility exemplified from Garnett, is the exact reaction that we have yet to see from Love throughout this entire ordeal. Has Kevin been lacking that veteran presence that Garnett received from Mitchell? Sure. That said, Love's personality doesn't exactly appear to be the type to reflect on any single fleeting moment as the point in time when his attitude made a 180 degree turn.
Sadly, that may be the exact reason why Love did not work out here in Minnesota.
"If you want to be a successful team," Saunders explained. "It has to turn into instead of being a lone warrior situation for any player, no matter who it is, it has to be you becoming more about the team."
No matter which side of the fence you are currently sitting with the debate about Kevin Love, we should all be able to agree that these words from the president of basketball operations (slash) head coach don't shine a whole lot of light on the positive side of the situation.
The NBA Draft is scheduled to be held on Thursday, June 26th giving Saunders and the Timberwolves seventeen more days to work something out and attempt to rebuild the team without their well known star.
Looking for more Wolves nuggets from Flip Saunders? Listen to the entire interview between KFAN's Dan Barreiro and Saunders in the player below.
Aj Mansour covers Minnesota Sports for KFAN.com. Feel free to leave comments and questions regarding this post in the space provided below. For Wolves updates and breaking Wolves news, follow Aj on Twitter. @AjKFAN