Chicago needs Love and Love needs Chicago
(Photo credit thesource.com)
The first domino in the 2015 free agent class has fallen, Kevin Love has made it clear that he intends to become an unrestricted free agent after the end of next season. The 6-foot-10 power forward scored 26.1 points a game while averaging 12.5 rebounds. Love can spread the floor for a big man, and he made over two 3-point shots a game last year.
Since Love joined the league, the Minnesota Timeberwolves have won 17, 26, 31, and 40 games. Despite the fact that his team is improving, the Timberwolves are far from being a contender in the loaded Western Conference. The eighth place team The Dallas Mavericks won nine games more than the Timberwolves this season, and teams like the Phoenix Suns and Los Angles Lakers are going to be better than they were this year.
Coming into his fifth season as a pro, Love has not yet experienced the playoffs or the pressure of playing in games that matter late in the season. It was reported that he wants to go to a team that is a winner. The team that makes sense for both parties is the Chicago Bulls.
The Bulls are in the less competitive Eastern Conference, and only the Miami Heat and Indiana Pacers can beat a healthy Bulls team in the playoffs. The Bulls have the ability to acquire Love via trade this year or wait until be becomes a free agent and sign him. Love is a great fit for a healthy Bulls team, because he is an upgrade from Carlos Boozer and he can spread the floor better.
Love can hit any shot on the floor consistently, and with that ability greatly improves the Bulls floor spacing in the halfcourt. A spread floor can give Derrick Rose opportunities to drive into the lane, and make plays at the rim or kick the ball out to open shooters. The Bull’s current roster is lacking a 3-point specialist outside of Mike Dunleavy.
With the addition of Love and improved outside shooting from Jimmy Butler and Tony Snell, the Bulls will finally be able to resolve their offensive woes that have plagued them for years. Love can score efficiently, his PER (player efficiency ranking) was third in the NBA last year behind MVP Kevin Durant and four-time MVP LeBron James.
The Bulls already have two leaders in Rose and Joakim Noah. Rose is the youngest MVP in the history of the league, and he is the unquestioned leader whether he is playing or not. Noah is the vocal leader and plays harder than anyone else on the team. His effort on the court embodies the toughness of Chicago.
Love would be the third option for the Bulls, and as a result will fly under the radar for criticism from fans and media members. Without having to carry a team to victory every game, Love can fit into a niche within the team. He also will not have to guard the best post player on the opposite team, because that job goes to Noah or Taj Gibson.
Chicago is the only place that Love can go to and see the results change in his favor immediately. The Bulls are the best fit this year or next year, so there is no reason to rush and make a trade that is going to cost too much. The best thing is to wait for the Timberwolves front office to panic, because they fear losing Love for nothing.