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Kevin Love says he loves being in Minnesota, wants to be there

Feb 8, 2013, 8:00 AM EST

Kevin Love AP

There’s a perception that Kevin Love is not happy in Minnesota.

Part of that is fueled by Love saying he didn’t feel the love from the Timberwolves organization last contract time, saying if this was still not a playoff team when his contract is up in a few years he would have to consider his options. Another part of it is fueled by fans of other teams (and front office types) that hope he is unhappy and that Minnesota would be forced to move him. They covet him.

Don’t bet on it.

First, he’s the face of the Timberwolves franchise, the guy that sells tickets and draws sponsors. There aren’t a lot of guys like that around.

And second, he likes it in Minnesota and wants to stay. That’s what he told the Associated Press on Thursday as he returned to practice for the first time in months, following hand surgery.

“I just think that they need to realize that I love being here,” Love said. “I don’t know where the misconception came along, but I love this team. I love this organization, and somewhere along the line it went the other way. I think that wholeheartedly they need to realize that I do want to be here. I have fun being here.”

Love has got two more seasons after this one before he can opt out of his deal. He and the Timberwolves are wed for a few years, for better or worse. This year has been worse, with Love s breaking his shooting hand twice, Ricky Rubio missing the first third of the season and not looking right, and he is not expected back until next month still.

But the better part is coming. It may be next season, but it is coming. This is a good core the Timberwolves have put together. Their time will come.

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