May 19, 2014, 1:33 PM EDT
Twenty-nine teams should be exploring trading for Kevin Love.
The other is the Minnesota Timberwolves, who already have Love.
Love is not only a star player, he’s young and has a skillset that works in any system. That makes him appealing everywhere.
According to an NBA source, Knicks president Phil Jackson has been plotting to be involved in making something happen with Love via a trade.
Another source said the Lakers also will make a monster push at trading for Love, who played at UCLA.
The Knicks believe they have the expiring contracts — Tyson Chandler and Iman Shumpert in particular — the Wolves might want so Minnesota can keep cap space to go after the star-studded 2015 free agent class.
The Knicks have practically no shot, but trying to convince their fans that every star is in play for New York is what they do. They can’t trade a first-round pick until 2018, and they’re short on promising young players with only Tim Hardaway Jr. and Iman Shumpert to offer.
Just cap room in 2015 won’t entice Minnesota at all. Know how else the Timberwolves can maximize cap room in 2015? Just keeping Love and letting him opt out. The Knicks need to offer something – likely much more – on top of that.
The Lakers are much better-positioned to trade for Love. They can’t deal their 2014 first-round pick until after the draft, but they could always pick on behalf of the Timberwolves and then officially complete the transaction later. Minnesota probably wouldn’t mind.
Like New York, Los Angeles doesn’t have many appealing tradable players, but a high lottery pick in a loaded draft is a much better starting point than what the Knicks can offer.
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