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Timberwolves Front And Center In NBA Trade Rumor Mill

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Andrew D. Bernstein/NBAE via Getty Images

Andrew D. Bernstein/NBAE via Getty Images

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(CBSSports.com/Matt Moore) –

Only with the Timberwolves would a No.2 overall pick be considered a burden. But that’s the case as just as soon as the Wolves found their spot in the lottery, rumors of them trying to trade it sprang to life.

And as Thursday’s draft inches ever closer, they’ve gotten out of control. They’re multiplying like Gremlins.

Seriously, if you see one, don’t feed it after midnight. Here’s what we’ve got. These are rumors and should be viewed with skepticism, but they pass the “okay, that’s not so absurd it’s laughable”/”that can’t possibly work under the current CBA” test.

Pau Gasol for Kevin Love and the No.2.  Yeah, that’s what you call a blockbuster deal. It sounds insane, until you think about it. The Wolves do want an established star. Gasol is buds with Rubio out of Spain.

The Lakers have been frustrated with Gasol and Love would rebound and hit threes while not challenging Bryant. Then you think about it some more and it’s still completely insane.

Eric Pincus of Hoopsworld floated some substantiation of the idea touched on by ESPN in a chat session about Gasol being on the Wolves’ radar.

Respected cap analyst Larry Coon tweeted over the weekend that there “may be some fire” there. Coon also said Love and the No.2 is too much, and that Love has not been put on the table.

The big thing here is that moving Gasol means risking the championship window which is assuredly still open as long as Gasol is still within range of his prime, which he is, though the distance is increasing.

Plus Love’s poor defense could be a big issue under Mike Brown. But there’s a decent around of smoke around this one, even if the flames seem plastic.

Here’s a fun one. The ESPN radio affiliate out of Minneapolis reported over the weekend that conversations had taken place between the Wolves and Bucks, sending the No.2 pick for Andrew Bogut and the No.10 pick. Darren Wolfson of local television confirmed the report and the Minneapolis Star-Tribune says it’s possible, but Milwaukee isn’t biting.

If Milwaukee were chasing the deal, it would mean that something was seriously wrong with Bogut’s wrist, which would probably kill the trade in a physical anyway. And with Darko Milicic on the books for four more years, the deal only gets more confusing.

Weirdly, the one established player who the Wolves could use who is on the block, and the one team that could use the No.2 as a building block in starting over is Monta Ellis and the Golden State Warriors. But while it makes a lot of sense, there’s no one biting, so far.

Thankfully a rumor that had Washington offering up JaVale McGee was shot down by the Washington Post. Trying to imagine McGee in the Minnesota winter trying to clown around with Ricky Rubio while Kevin Love cries at his locker was a little much to take in as a mental image.

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