Ben Golliver of SI.com grades out the Kevin Love blockbuster trade, giving the Wolves a lower score than either the Cavs or Sixers. Meanwhile, Ryan Wolstat of the Toronto Sun sees Minnesota as the clear victor of the trade, and Philadelphia the biggest loser. Plenty more will be written about the trade as the teams and players involved meet, exceed, or fall short of shifting expectations. Here’s a roundup of some early reactions:
- At the press conference addressing the trade (video link), Wolves president of basketball ops Flip Saunders said that he was prepared to enter the season without trading away Love if he hadn’t received an offer that would significantly benefit Minnesota.
- Saunders added that he believes the Wolves now have an exciting identity with the reconstructed roster. “We’ve all of a sudden become athletic, exciting and fast, instead of being maybe a little bit slower and more plodding,” said Saunders. Trade acquisition Andrew Wiggins pairs with fellow lottery pick Zach LaVine as two of the most elite athletes to be drafted in recent years.
- GM Milt Newton summed up how Minnesota was able to acquire such a large package for Love to Jon Krawczynski of The Associated Press (Twitter link). “They realized we weren’t going to give him away,” said Newton.
- J.A. Adande of ESPN.com writes that the Wolves have escaped the dregs of NBA mediocrity with the Love deal, giving themselves a chance to build a stronger future than they might have had with Love in town.
- Since the Wolves aren’t likely to make the playoffs with Thaddeus Young replacing Love in the starting lineup this season, Jim Souhan of the Star Tribune thinks it was a mistake for Saunders to send the 2015 first-round draft pick they could have netted from the Cavs to the Sixers. Minnesota will likely still be rebuilding next season, and would be better served acquiring more young talent, surmises Souhan.