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Kevin Love returns to Wolves: 'I love being here'

Published on NewsOK Modified: February 7, 2013 at 5:35 pm •  Published: February 7, 2013
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The former UCLA Bruin's criticism of the organization and long-known affinity for Los Angeles led some panic-stricken fans to believe that he wanted become the latest star athlete to leave Minnesota for a bigger market, despite the fact that he signed a four-year contract extension in January 2012 that included an opt-out after three years.

"I just think that they need to realize that I love being here," Love said. "I don't know where the misconception came along, but I love this team. I love this organization, and somewhere along the line it went the other way. I think that wholeheartedly they need to realize that I do want to be here. I have fun being here."

Love said at the time that he made many positive comments in his oft-cited Yahoo interview that were not included in the story. He may not have helped himself in January when he posted a picture on his Twitter account of a watch resting on a biography of Lakers great Jerry West. Sensitive fans again assailed him, saying it proved that he didn't want to be in Minnesota. Love said he reads the book for inspiration looks up to West because his father Stan Love played with him on the Lakers.

Still, the 24-year-old appears to have come to the realization that, as one of the two faces of the franchise along with Rubio, his words and actions are under greater scrutiny.

"All I can do is, you know, be happy with and only manage things that I can control," Love said. "And with that continue to be humble. In some cases, just shut my mouth and continue to go out there and work. I think the same applies for everybody on the team, and you know, everybody involved with the organization."

Love has yet to be cleared for contact, but he does hope to be back by sometime in the middle of March. He said his hand feels much better after the surgery than it did when he let it heal on its own the first time, and he's trying to get back to salvage something from this most disappointing season.

"That decision will be made purely on where he is and how healthy he is," coach Rick Adelman said. "The time for that is later. It's not right now."

Love hopes to return with about a month left in the regular season and start putting all the negativity of the first four months of the season behind him.

"As far as me and more importantly the team goes, yeah, I think there's a lot of stuff that we can salvage," he said. "We can continue to get the fans back on our side so they'll have something to root for."

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Follow Jon Krawczynski on Twitter: http://twitter.com/APKrawczynski