This year’s Most Improved Player of the Year Award was announced earlier today from the Target Center. He made history as he became the first Timberwolves player, ever, to win the MIP.
Love averaged 20.2ppg this season and led the League with 15.2rpg as well as earned his first All-Star appearance as an injury replacement selected by Commissioner David Stern for Yao Ming.
New Bulls Head Coach Tom Thibodeau had this to say, “The year that he’s had has been unbelievable. When you average 20 and 15 in this league, that says a lot. It says a lot about how he’s improved from year to year. He’s a guy that plays hard all the time and will continue to improve from year to year.”
The Wolves big man won the MIP with 66 first place votes and 400 of 580 points possible. Blazers big man LaMarcus Aldridge was second with 11 first place votes and 157 total.
For the previous two seasons, he was behind Big Al Jefferson on the depth chart and was subsequently a 6th man. The Wolves sent off Jefferson to Utah last summer, which moved Love into the starting spot, with starter minutes and he delivered.
His 53-consecutive double-doubles set a new NBA record since the ABA/NBA merger 30+ years ago, back with Moses Malone.
When asked about the future, Love had this to say, “I think I can make another big leap. There’s always stuff to work on. The great players and even the good players in the League always add a couple things to their game. I intend on adding more than a couple if I can so I’m going to work my butt off to take another big leap.”
Needless to say, he needs to improve on his defensive presence. His low post defending and face up game on offense need to improve, if he wants to “take another big leap.”
Offseason workout partner Derrick Rose had this to say, “The way he works, you should see how hard he goes. When we work out we don’t do (any) big-man drills. It’s all guard stuff with me and Russ (Russell Westbrook). It’s amazing how hard he works out.”
There’s no doubt that if Love wants to take a big leap the Timberwolves need to drastically improve from this 17-win season.
I will post a link to the video of the announcement shortly. Until then, thanks for reading and GO WOLVES!