Ah, media day. Just a casual get together with no scoreboard, no sneaking out before the locker room is opened and no looks of solemn contemplation. Everyone is relaxed, refreshed and ready to show off their new duds. But as the new look Wolves gathered for their first public appearance it seemed that the same old subjects kept resurfacing.
- Kevin Love is still swelling with pride after Team USA brought a gold medal home from this summer’s World Championships and while he didn’t learn any new languages, he apparently has learned to say the right things. As the told the Star Tribune
“Be the vocal guy, lead by example,” Love said. “Last year, I kind of stepped away from that. I’m learning throughout this whole year, don’t have any lapses. If I miss a shot or get mad at a play, get mad at a referee, get mad at a coach, just run back down the court and do the right thing. Make the right play, make the extra pass, just be fundamentally a team guy.”
Even if Rambis once again should ask him to come off the bench this season?
“It might be tough to accept after seeing how things transpired with USA Basketball,” Love said. “I’d probably grit my teeth, but I need to know what’s best for the team. If I’m going to preach being a leader, I need to do what’s best for us to win.
“I think I’ll play a bigger part than I did last year. I feel regardless of what happens, I need to be here for these guys. I can already tell with the guys we have and the personalities, we’re going to grow with this team and we’re going to be a lot better. It might not show in wins and losses, but I feel like we’re going to be together a lot more than we have my first two seasons.”
Love’s forthrightness has taken a few left turns in the past, but he’s bridging the gap between speaking his mind and driving us mad. Even though he occasionally oversteps his boundaries, he should be not only believed, but appreciated in this league of cliches and doublespeak. However, this is just media day. It’ll be interesting to see how much patience he’ll show throughout the season as Rambis continues to tinker with the rotation. A seat on the bench is easier to swallow for national pride than it is for a 15 win franchise and a commitment to doing the right thing doesn’t matter much if no one can agree what the ‘right thing’ is. Kevin clearly considers himself the de facto leader of this unit, but he hasn’t even secured a place in the starting lineup, which according to the Timberwolves taskmaster is “completely open to competition”. It’s in everyone’s best interest that Love conquers all, no?
- Michael Beasley is also an open book, one he’ll tell anyone within earshot is still in the first chapter. More from the STrib
When asked if coming here was a fresh start: “I don’t want a fresh start. Everything that has happened in my life made me what I am.”On whether he has a chip on his shoulder (the short answer: yes): “Always. I feel some people have counted me out.” Beasley noted his averages of 15 or so points and six rebounds from last year weren’t bad, but promised more. “We’re going to have fun this year. I have a lot of motivation built up. Not against a particular team or person, but I think a lot of people think I can’t play basketball.” Beasley said he hopes to prove those folks wrong.
Beasley said Kahn should not have been fined for comments the GM made on local radio when he revealed some details about why Beasley might not have met expectations in Miami. “He meant the right thing, he just didn’t word it right,” Beasley said of Kahn’s comments, which included a reference to marijuana use by Beasley. “I don’t feel he should have been fined. … I feel I have learned from what I did. He only said what half the world already knew.”