Kevin Love

In case you missed it, Kevin Love is in Beast Mode


Last night against the Bobcats, Kevin Love dropped 40 points and grabbed 19 rebounds.

A good night by anyone’s standards, but for Love that was just his third highest total this month. Those kinds of numbers are almost becoming routine — he’s had nine straight double-doubles and had more than 20 points in 14 of his last 15 games.

The arguments made last year by some that “he is just putting up good numbers because his team is so bad” look foolish now. The Wolves added Nikola Pekovic to the front line — a powerful rebounder — and Love is still pulling them down at eye-popping numbers. (That argument always was a bit foolish because opposing teams could focus on him before, now they have someone else to occupy them as well.)

Since the All-Star Game the Timberwolves forward has been tearing up the league. He is in full beast mode. We need to appreciate what is going on here.

In his last 10 games he is averaging 30.5 points and 14.3 rebounds per game. Averaging. He is shooting 45.5 percent from three during that stretch. He is getting four offensive rebounds a contest.

Love’s offense comes from a variety of ways — 22 percent of his opportunities come with him in the post, but he is scoring well as a spot up guy at the arc (he is shooting 38.6 percent in that mold) or as the big in the pick-and-roll this season (he misses Ricky Rubio there). Not to mention all those offensive rebounds. (Stats via

Love’s name has even started to pop up in some MVP conversations, although he told the Washington Post he’s not buying into that.

As for all of the MVP talk, Love said, “In some ways it’s warranted, but we need to win a lot more games in order to be anywhere close to that.”

He’s right, but that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t appreciate what is going on here. Love is on an epic tear. It’s easy to forget about the Timberwolves, but we should be watching. He is something special.

Is DeMarcus Cousins MVP worthy? “It’s mine to grab”

DeMarcus Cousins

Last season, DeMarcus Cousins received zero MVP votes (the same as every year of his career). Even though he averaged 24.1 points, and 12.7 rebounds a game, which was enough to get him his first All-Star berth, MVP is another thing entirely. Only players on winning teams tend to draw the attention of MVP voters.

This season, can Cousins — arguably the best center in the game — get in the conversation?

He thinks it’s more than just that, he told Kevin Ding at Bleacher Report.

The topic is the 2015-16 NBA MVP award and whether it could be reachable for DeMarcus Cousins.

“Reachable, man?” Cousins told Bleacher Report, his voice rising high. “It’s mine to grab.”

As noted above, the only way Cousins gets into the conversation — fair or not — is if the Kings are in the playoffs (at the very least). He understands that.

“It’s going to take a full team effort,” Cousins said. “I’ll try to play at a high level and bring my team along with me.”

Vlade Divac built a Kings’ team designed to start winning now — as you would expect from a team a year away from moving into a new arena they need to fill. Owner Vivek Ranadive is not about selling hope anymore, he wants to sell wins.

I think Cousins can help provide that.

I’m less sold on the cast around him being able to help.

PBT Extra bold prediction preview: Markieff Morris will be a happy Sun

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After a bumpy season where the he fought with Suns coaches, then a summer where he and his twin Marcus felt they were blindsided by a trade, Markieff Morris has been plenty vocal about his unhappiness in Phoenix. To the point it has cost him some serious cash.

So what should we expect from Markieff Morris’ upcoming season?

Relative calm, I tell Jenna Corrado of NBCSports in this latest edition of PBT Extra previewing the NBA season.

The reasons are twofold. First, he has to realize the Suns aren’t trading him anyway (especially not while he publicly demands a trade, lowering his trade value). Second, can you imagine how new locker room leader Tyson Chandler is going to react to that? Chandler was brought in to fill a leadership void in the locker room, and you can bet he will make his displeasure at such team-disrupting antics known.

Still not sure if that’s enough to get the Suns to the playoffs.