Kevin Love interview
Minnesota Timberwolves power forward Kevin Love had a good rookie season, averaging 11.1 points and 9.1 rebounds in 25.3 minutes per game. InsideHoops.com editor Jeff Lenchiner recently met with Love in New York City and discussed his game and the ongoing 2009 NBA Playoffs. Note that this interview was conducted about a week ago, when the conference Finals were just getting started.
InsideHoops.com: What are you up to this summer? Anything cool?
Kevin Love: Just working out. Really trying to get better. Just been working on my body, my cardio, my weightlifting. Next week and the week after that I'll be really starting to get on the court a little bit more. I'll start my yoga up, and also physical therapy. So I'm really taking care of my body, to put me in the next level of players that I think I'm at.
InsideHoops.com: Talk about you and Al Jefferson alongside each other. Early on, you were still learning the ropes. Then he got hurt. I'm visualizing a great future for you two. Talk about that and his game.
Kevin Love: Unbelievable. Especially for only being 24 years old. I think he's the best, young, low-post scorer in the whole league. I learned a lot from him, even when he went out with his injury. I felt like he was a mentor for me. Only being a couple years older than me, me being 20, him being 24, he really helped me out on and off the floor. So, just seeing visuals of what's to come, as I grow and as he grows, is hopefully going to be something special and we can make some playoff runs.
InsideHoops.com: And as for the current playoffs, who do you see reaching the Finals?
InsideHoops.com reminder: As stated above, this interview was recorded just as the conference finals were starting.
Kevin Love: I think Cleveland will get there. They'll roll past Orlando, in probably five or six games. I think Denver and L.A. will go all seven. I like the way that looks, and I like the way both the teams play.
InsideHoops.com: Lakers and Nuggets is an amazing matchup.
Kevin Love: It is. It's unbelievable.
InsideHoops.com: There are so many X-factors on those rosters, especially when against each other.
Kevin Love: There are so many X-factors, and so many different players... you got Nene, you got Chauncey, you got Carmelo, K-Mart as well, being the core of Denver, then you have guys that do intangible stuff, like Birdman off the bench, who gets six blocks, six points, six rebounds, things like that. And then on the Lakers, you have Kobe, you have Lamar, you have Gasol, but you also have guys like Bynum, you have Fish, who's won a couple championships. You have Ariza, who starts and also comes off the bench sometimes as well. Shannon Brown, Jordan Farmar. Those guys are what make it interesting.
InsideHoops.com: I feel like I know exactly what Cleveland does, what Orlando does. But of course I've seen the Lakers and Nuggets a ton of times too, but feel like every game some new interesting stuff can pop up.
Kevin Love: With Cleveland, you know what they're running, but with LeBron, you can't stop it. You can try to shut him down as best you can, but you can only hope to really contain him.
InsideHoops.com: Who do you see winning the championship?
Kevin Love: That's a tough question, but I think Cleveland's steamrolling right now. But if they hit a good Western conference team, some glitch might happen in the road but I see Cleveland winning.