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Kevin Love
Kevin Love Den.jpg
Minnesota Timberwolves  – No. 42
Power forward/Center
Born September 7, 1988 (1988-09-07) (age 21)
Santa Monica, California
Nationality American
Listed height 6 ft 10 in (2.08 m)
Listed weight 260 lb (118 kg)
League NBA
Salary $3,401,040 [1]
High school Lake Oswego, Oregon
College UCLA
Draft 5th overall, 2008
Memphis Grizzlies
Pro career 2008–present
Awards NBA All-Rookie Second Team
Naismith Prep Player of the Year
Profile Info Page

Kevin Wesley Love (born September 7, 1988) is an American professional basketball player for the Minnesota Timberwolves of the National Basketball Association (NBA). Love played college basketball for the UCLA Bruins as he led the team to a Final Four appearance in 2008 as a freshman. After the season, Love was named the Pac-10 Conference Player of the Year and then decided to skip his final three years of college eligibility to enter the 2008 NBA Draft.[2] He was selected by the Memphis Grizzlies as the fifth overall pick and was later traded to the Timberwolves in exchange for O. J. Mayo as part of an eight-player deal.[3] Love signed with Minnesota on July 11, 2008.[4]


Early years

Love was born in Santa Monica, California as the second of three children to former NBA forward Stan Love and Karen Love. A year later, Love's family moved to Lake Oswego, Oregon.[5] Growing up, Stan passed on his interest in basketball to Love by showing tapes of the Lakers-Celtics rivalry as well as instructional tapes from Hall of Famers such as Hakeem Olajuwon, David Robinson, Charles Barkley, and Michael Jordan. Also, for hand and wrist strength, Stan would push Love to do fingertip push-ups and other exercises as well as showing tapes of all-time great passing centers in Wes Unseld and Bill Walton.[6] As a result, Love is known for his outlet passing skills and long distance shooting during practice and pre-game shoot-arounds.[7][8]

High school career

Love attended Lake Oswego High School in Oregon, where he was ranked as one of the top players in the nation from the class of 2007.[9] After a solid freshman season where he helped the team to a 19-9 record,[10] Love led the Lake Oswego Lakers to the 2005 Oregon state high school basketball championship game in his sophomore year. He averaged 25.3 points, 15.4 rebounds, and 3.7 assists[10] but the team lost to Jesuit High School 57–53.[11] That summer, Love was the center of controversy when Nike removed him from its Portland Elite Legends AAU team because he had chosen to participate in the Reebok ABCD Camp against other top recruits such as Greg Oden.[12] Love went on to play for the Southern California All-Stars, who compiled an unprecedented 46–0 record with Love as he garnered three MVP awards along the way.[10]

In 2006, Love averaged 28.0 points, 16.1 rebounds, and dished out 3.5 assists as the Lakers returned to the Oregon state championship game. With Love's 24 points and 9 rebounds, the Lakers defeated South Medford and fellow star recruit Kyle Singler 59-57.[11] In Love's final year at Lake Oswego, he faced constant double and sometimes triple teams but managed 33.9 points, 17.0 rebounds, and 4.0 assists per game as the team finished 26-2.[10] The two teams met again for the 2007 championship, this time however, Singler and South Medford defeated Lake Oswego 58–54, overcoming Love's 37 points and 15 rebounds.[10] Following the season, Love was named the 2007 Men's Basketball Gatorade National Player of the Year.

Love finished his high school career as the all-time leading scorer in Oregon boys' basketball history with 2,628 points, a record that had stood for 50 years, despite missing half of his sophomore season with a knee injury.[13] Earlier that year in a game against Rex Putnam High School, Love shattered the backboard on a breakaway dunk.[14]

College career

UCLA's Kevin Love on the perimeter at Pac 10 Championship game against Stanford at Staples Center, Los Angeles, 2008. Ben Howland and the UCLA bench looks on from the sideline.

In July 2006, Love verbally committed to play college basketball at UCLA.[15] Love, who has worn number 42 for a majority of his basketball career, received permission from Walt Hazzard to wear the same number with UCLA even though the school had retired the number for Hazzard in 1996.[16] Since arriving at UCLA, Love has also regularly sought out retired Bruins legends and Basketball Hall of Famers John Wooden and retired center Bill Walton for advice.[17]

Love's decision to play at UCLA brought animosity from fans of the University of Oregon, his father's alma mater, where it was expected he would play. Prior to a game at Oregon, Duck fans obtained Love's cell phone number and left obscene messages as well as death threats; the fans also subjected Love's family to obscenities and threw garbage at them during the game. This event, along with similar events directed at other players, has prompted a discussion of whether abuse by college basketball fans is becoming too extreme.[18]

At the end of the 2007–08 regular season, Love was named a first-team All-American, Pac-10 Freshman and Player of the Year. He led the Bruins with averages of 17.5 points and 10.6 rebounds along with 23 double-doubles.[4] In the 2008 Pacific-10 Conference Men's Basketball Tournament, the Bruins defeated the USC Trojans, featuring O. J. Mayo, in the semi-finals. Both Mayo and Love were nominated to the All Pac-10 tournament team. Love guided UCLA to the regular season Pac-10 conference championship, as well as the conference tournament championship and a #1 seed in the 2008 NCAA Men's Division I Basketball Tournament. Love helped the Bruins to the Final Four of the tournament, where they lost to the Memphis Tigers.

NBA career


Rookie season

In a press conference on April 17, 2008, Love announced his intention to leave UCLA and enter the 2008 NBA Draft.[2] He was taken fifth overall by the Memphis Grizzlies, right after his teammate at UCLA, Russell Westbrook. Following the draft, Love was traded along with Mike Miller, Brian Cardinal, and Jason Collins to the Minnesota Timberwolves, with the third overall pick O. J. Mayo, Antoine Walker, Marko Jaric, and Greg Buckner going to the Grizzlies.[3][19]

Love went on to play in the NBA Summer League and was the leader in rebounds with 13.5 per game while averaging 18.0 points.[20] In his NBA debut on October 30, Love came off the bench to contribute 12 points and nine rebounds in a 98-96 win over the Sacramento Kings.[21] However, the Timberwolves struggled early on losing 15 of their first 19 games, prompting the dismissal of head coach Randy Wittman.[22] Love had progressed slowly during Wittman's tenure but Kevin McHale, a Hall of Famer whom Love grew up watching, took over as head coach and developed a close relationship with Love.[23][24][25] Under McHale, the Timberwolves improved their play in January by going 10-4, with Love averaging a double-double. Things took a turn for the worst however, when Love's star teammate Al Jefferson was sidelined for the rest of the season with a torn ACL in February.[26] Love's playing time increased as a result and he responded by being named the NBA Rookie of the Month for March.[27] Despite the slow start to his rookie season, Love improved his play significantly under the guidance of coach McHale. Surprisingly, he was not selected to the NBA All-Star Weekend Rookie Challenge.[28]

Love finished the year averaging 11.1 points and 9.1 rebounds in 81 games (37 starts). He lead all rookies with 29 double-doubles, the most by a Timberwolves rookie in franchise history. Although Love only played 25.3 minutes per game, he finished ninth in the league in rebounding and third in total offensive rebounds. Love finished sixth in Rookie of the Year voting and was named to the 2009 NBA's NBA All-Rookie Second Team along with fellow UCLA classmate Russell Westbrook, who was named to the First Team.[29]

2009-10 season

In the off-season, Love, from his Twitter account, broke the story that Kevin McHale wasn't returning to coach the Timberwolves for the 2009-2010 season.[30]

In a pre-season game on October 16, 2009 against the Chicago Bulls, Love broke the fourth metacarpal of his left hand by banging it against the elbow of teammate Oleksiy Pecherov. Following surgery on October 19, 2009, Love missed the first 18 games of the season. He returned against the New Orleans Hornets on December 4, 2009, and recorded double-doubles for points and rebounds in that game and the following night against the Utah Jazz.

Love scored a career-high 25 points with 11 rebounds in a January 31, 2010 win over the Knicks.[31]

Kevin Love was selected to play in NBA All-Star Weekend Rookie Challenge ,and collected 12 points and 6 rebounds in the game, but the sophomores lost to the Rookies for the 1st time since 2002, and Tyreke Evans was named the game's MVP.

NBA career statistics

  GP Games played   GS  Games started  MPG  Minutes per game
 FG%  Field-goal percentage  3P%  3-point field-goal percentage  FT%  Free-throw percentage
 RPG  Rebounds per game  APG  Assists per game  SPG  Steals per game
 BPG  Blocks per game  PPG  Points per game  Bold  Career high

Regular season

2008–09 Minnesota 81 37 25.3 .459 .105 .789 9.1 1.0 .4 .6 11.1
Career 81 37 25.3 .459 .105 .789 9.1 1.0 .4 .6 11.1

Personal life

Love's father Stan is the brother of Beach Boys' singer Mike Love, and the first cousin of the Beach Boys' Brian Wilson, Carl Wilson and Dennis Wilson. His aunt is Kathleen McCartney, who won the women's Ironman Triathlon in February 1982 and is a member of the U.S. Triathlon Hall of Fame. He has an older brother, Collin, and a younger sister, Emily.[32]

Love's middle name, Wesley, is in honor of Wes Unseld, the former Washington Bullets forward and the Loves' family friend.[33]

Love was also picked to be on the front cover for the video game NCAA Basketball 09.[34]

Love was one of the featured stars in the film Gunnin' for That No. 1 Spot, produced and directed by Beastie Boy Adam Yauch. The film is currently out on DVD.



  • 2009 March Western Conference Rookie of the Month
  • 2009 NBA's All-Rookie Second Team


  • 2008 State Farm Second Team All-America
  • 2008 National Most Valuable Player of the Year
  • 2008 All-America Team
  • 2008 Associated Press First Team All-America
  • 2008 NCAA tournament West Regional's Most Outstanding Player
  • 2008 Pac-10 Freshman of the Year
  • 2008 Pac-10 Player of the Year
  • 2008 All Pac-10 team
  • 2008 All Pac-10 freshman team
  • 2008 ESPN All-America First Team
  • 2008 Sporting News All-America First Team
  • 2008 Sports Illustrated First Team
  • 2008 USBWA: All America First Team, District IX Player of the Year, as well as being named to the All-District team and nominated for the Oscar Robertson Trophy

High school

  • 2007 Most Valuable Player Award at the Reebok Invitational
  • 2007 Gatorade National High School Athlete of the Year
  • 2007 Parade Magazine Player of the Year
  • 2007 McDonald's National Prep Player of the Year
  • 2007 Gatorade National HS Basketball Player of the Year
  • 2007 Naismith Male Prep Player of the Year
  • 2007 Oregon Player of the Year (tie with Kyle Singler)
  • 2007 Roundball Classic MVP
  • 2007 Les Schwab Tournament All Tournament Team
  • 2006 Les Schwab Tournament All Tournament Team
  • 2006 MVP Kingwood Classic
  • 2006 MVP Las Vegas Easter Classic
  • 2006 MVP Bob Gibbons Memorial Day Classic
  • 2006 MVP Bigtime Las Vegas Bigtime
  • 2006 Reebok ABCD Camp Player of the Week
  • 2006 Oregon Player of the Year
  • 2005 Oregon Player of the Year
  • 2005 Les Schwab Tournament All Tournament Team
  • 2005 Reebok ABCD Player of the Week
  • 2005 MVP, Kingwood Classic
  • 2005 MVP, New Orleans Memorial Day Classic
  • 2004 MVP, Les Schwab Classic
  • 2004 Les Schwab Tournament All Tournament Team
  • No. 1 rated senior by ESPN (Class of 2007)
  • No. 1 rated senior by Bob Gibbons (Class of 2007)
  • No. 1 rated senior by Van Coleman/Hoopmasters (Class of 2007)


  1. ^ "Minnesota Timberwolves Salaries". HoopsHype. Retrieved 2010-02-07. 
  2. ^ a b "UCLA's Love says he's headed to the NBA". 2008-04-18. Retrieved 2010-02-07. 
  3. ^ a b Ford, Chad (2008-06-27). "Mayo heads to Memphis, Love to Minnesota in blockbuster trade". Retrieved 2010-02-07. 
  4. ^ a b "Wolves sign Love". 2008-07-11. Retrieved 2010-02-07. 
  5. ^ Branch, John (2008-03-18). "Having Fun, Fun, Fun as a Freshman at U.C.L.A". New York Times. Retrieved 2010-02-07. 
  6. ^ Markazi, Arash (2007-03-02). "Feelin' the Love: Old school hoops phenom turning heads all over". Retrieved 2010-02-07. 
  7. ^ Pucin, Diane (2007-07-12). "Westwood's outlet center". LA Times. Retrieved 2010-02-07. 
  8. ^ Wojciechowski, Gene (2008-03-28). "Soak up the one-and-done experience of Love". Retrieved 2010-02-07. 
  9. ^ See Class of 2007 rankings by and
  10. ^ a b c d e "UCLA Player Bio: Kevin Love". Retrieved 2010-02-09. 
  11. ^ a b "OSAA Boy's Basketball State Champions". Oregon School Activities Association. Retrieved 2007-04-27. 
  12. ^ Winn, Luke (July 18, 2005). "Love, basketball and business". Retrieved 2007-03-20. 
  13. ^ Stewart, Bill (2007-04-12). "Awards pile up for Kevin Love". Lake Oswego Review. Retrieved 2010-02-09. 
  14. ^ Love breaks backboard Video at YouTube
  15. ^ Freeman, Joe (July 26, 2006). "And the winner is...". The Oregonian. Retrieved 2007-01-19. 
  16. ^ Parikh, Sagar (2006-04-06). "Hazzard to give up number". The Daily Bruin. Retrieved 2007-02-21. 
  17. ^ Katz, Andy (2007-10-22). "Love reaches out to the Wizard for advice, history". Retrieved 2007-10-22. 
  18. ^ Wahl, Greg (2008-02-26). "Over the Top". Retrieved 2008-03-05. 
  19. ^ Staff Writer (2008-06-17). "O. J. Mayo, Kevin Love trading places in eight-player swap". USA Today. Retrieved 2010-02-22. 
  20. ^ "2008 NBA Summer League Statistics". 
  21. ^ Krawczynski, Jon (2008-10-29). "Love's efficient night helps Wolves escape". Yahoo Sports!. Retrieved 2010-02-25. 
  22. ^ Staff Writer (2008-12-08). "4-15 Minnesota Timberwolves fire Randy Wittman". Retrieved 2010-02-25. 
  23. ^ Zgoda, Jerry (2008-06-25). "Kevin Love a mirror image of McHale". Star Tribune. Retrieved 2010-02-26. 
  24. ^ Bolch, Ben (2009-01-20). "Kevin McHale really likes Kevin Love". LA Times. Retrieved 2010-02-26. 
  25. ^ Imus, Karly (2009-07-23). "Kevin Love looking for bigger, better achievements". The Oregonian. Retrieved 2010-02-28. 
  26. ^ Staff Writer (2009-02-09). "Jefferson has torn ACL in right knee". Retrieved 2010-02-28. 
  27. ^ Official Release (2009-04-03). "Bulls' Rose, Wolves' Love named Rookies of the Month". Retrieved 2010-02-28. 
  28. ^ Staff Writer (2009-01-29). "McHale: Love's rookie game snub 'utterly ridiculous'". USA Today. Retrieved 2010-02-28. 
  29. ^ "Kevin Love Named to All-Rookie Second Team". Retrieved 2009-05-26. 
  30. ^ Staff Writer (2009-06-17). "Love: McHale won't return". Retrieved 2010-03-10. 
  31. ^ Krawczynski, Jon (2010-01-31). "Timberwolves rout hapless Knicks 112-91". Yahoo Sports!. Retrieved 2010-03-10. 
  32. ^ "Player Bio: Kevin Love". Retrieved 2007-10-03. 
  33. ^ Harris, Beth (2008-02-09). "Kevin Love's old-school game, maturity make him a college throwback at UCLA". 
  34. ^ Jack (2008-08-10). "Kevin Love to be on the cover of NCAA March Madness 2009". 


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