Click here to Skip to main content

Wolves shut Love down for rest of season

Posted Apr 22 2012 8:20PM

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) -- Kevin Love has passed all concussion tests and been cleared by the NBA to return to the court, but the MInnesota Timberwolves aren't about to take any chances with the new face of their franchise.

The Wolves shut their All-Star power forward down on Sunday, not wanting to risk further injury in the final two games of the season.

Love has been out since being knocked woozy in a game at Denver on April 11. He suffered what the team called a mild concussion and a strained neck, but the possibility remained that he would return before the season came to a close. But coach Rick Adelman said before Sunday's game against Golden State that the combination of missed time and the sensitive nature of head injuries made it not worth the risk.

Love returned to practice on Saturday and said he felt good back on the court, but said he would do what was in the best interests of his long-term health.

Guard Luke Ridnour also has been shut down with a sprained right ankle that has kept him out since April 2.

"It's just best for both of them not to push it," Adelman said.

Love is fourth in the league with 26 points per game and second in rebounding with 13.3 per game.

The Timberwolves do not have a first-round pick in next year's draft - their 2012 pick is in the New Orleans Hornets' hands as part of a long-ago trade that brought Marko Jaric to Minnesota and sent Sam Cassell to the Los Angeles Clippers. The only way the Wolves can have a first-round pick in the June draft is if Utah makes the playoffs and has to give up its lottery-protected pick, which was part of the Al Jefferson trade two years ago.

So this is not part of some elaborate tanking strategy aimed at giving the Wolves a better chance at moving up in the draft lottery.

Adelman said Wolves coaches and doctors met to make the decision jointly. The Wolves finish the season with a game against Denver on Thursday.

"We'll just go with the guys we have and hope we can get a couple of wins," he said.

photoGameTime: Rebuilding New Orleans
Chris Duhon joins Game Time to talk about rebuilding New Orleans five years after hurricane Katrina.
photoBasketball Without Borders: Americas
An all-access pass as Dominican Republic native Al Horford of the Atlanta Hawks led a contingent of players and coaches to his home country to host a "Basketball without Borders" camp.
photoRemembering Darryl Dawkins
The NBA family lost a valued member when Darryl Dawkins passed away suddenly on Thursday at the age of 58. Known as much for his powerful game as his creative, offbeat personality, "Chocolate Thunder" became a fan favorite -- and when his career ended, he continued to generously give back to the game through his work in the community. Jared Greenberg looks back on Darryl Dawkins, a player we'll never forget.
photoShaq's Rookie Year
A look back at some of Shaquille O'Neal's rookie season highlights in Orlando.
photoShaquille O'Neal's Career Top 10
Take a look back at Shaq's Top 10 moments throughout his NBA career.

Copyright © NBA Media Ventures, LLC. All rights reserved. No portion of may be duplicated, redistributed or manipulated in any form. By accessing any information beyond this page, you agree to abide by the Privacy Policy / Your California Privacy Rights and Terms of Use. | Ad Choices Ad Choices is part of Turner Sports Digital, part of the Turner Sports & Entertainment Digital Network.