There's a good fanshot and comments regarding Lisa Dillman's tweet about Rick Adelman signing with the Minnesota Timberwolves down below. And here's an article from Tom Ziller on the same subject and another from Adrian Wojnarowski. The point is made by several people along the way that the hiring of Adelman by David Kahn might have been a ploy to encourage Kevin Love to sign a contract extension with Minnesota. Ziller expands on that here.
So: Why would Kevin Love seriously consider NOT extending with the Timberwolves? Well, the answer to me seems obvious. Because Minnesota's front office is horrible, the team is poorly coached and uh... terrible. At the beginning of last year, Love, their best player, was often left sitting on the bench as the game burned away. David Kahn is arrogant, comically inept, and the laughing stock of the league. Of course Love might not extend... who wants to be part of this ridiculous circus of ineptitude?
But, recently, here, and here, Clipper fans argued heatedly whether Blake Griffin would ever consider such a move (refusing to sign an initial extension with the Clippers). I feel strongly that if the team doesn't show marked improvement and improvement in the front office and coaching, he might very well leave, despite the financial advantages to staying. It seems to me there's not much difference between Griffin's situation and Love's. Both play for teams that probably don't deserve them, both play for teams with questionable coaching staffs, both play for teams with ownership/front offices who have a history of bad management and clownish behavior. In that regard, the Clippers might even be worse than the Timberwolves.
So, tell me again, given the mediocrity of the Clippers management (ownership, front office, coaching) why wouldn't Blake Griffin leave? Because of money? Because of an extra year (assuming the new CBA resembles the current one)? From the Minneapolis Star Tribune: "When I talked about the prospect of me re-signing, I always said one of the things we'd have to have is a great coach," he said. "If it's true, we've got a great coach."
Part of me is jealous: Rick Adelman, in my opinion, is a great coach. Vinny Del Negro isn't. But I don't think Blake Griffin will hang around if the Clippers continue this long trend of mediocrity. Do you think Kevin Love is lying when he delicately threatens to not sign an extension? Won't the hiring of Adelman help the TWolves in their bid to extend their best player? Or do you think Love would extend anyway... because of salary alone? Why? For the extra year? Can't he ultimately make more money elsewhere given his potential for non-basketball earnings? Especially if he's playing for a team that actually, you know, wins?