Love meets with local doctor, surgery unclear
JAN 07, 2013 12:49p ET
MINNEAPOLIS – Kevin Love met with a local doctor Monday morning to consult about the broken third metacarpal in his right hand. No decision has yet been made about whether the power forward will need surgery, and the Timberwolves expect to include Dr. Andy Weiland, the hand specialist at the Hospital for Special Surgery in New York who's consulted on Love's past two hand injuries, in the discussion going forward.
Timberwolves president of basketball operations David Kahn addressed the media after Monday's practice, and he said that it's still uncertain whether Love will need to make a trip to New York to see Weiland. The MRI taken Saturday that confirmed the break was sent to New York Monday morning.
"This is the doctor that did his left hand a couple years ago," Kahn said. "It's the doctor that he consulted with before determining the protocol before the previous break, so I think this doctor will be involved. I think this doctor is unavailable today, so I think tomorrow, maybe Wednesday at the latest. I think it is important that we let that doctor weigh in."
The Timberwolves will devise a plan for Love's recovery in the next day or two, and Kahn was hesitant to speculate about whether surgery will be necessary or what a feasible time frame for Love's recovery might be. Right now, the guess stands at a vague "number of weeks," and more will be known once the consultation is completed.
Love is disappointed, as one might expect, Kahn said, and almost in disbelief.
"It almost seems like somebody made this stuff up," Kahn said. "But I've communicated with him. … He's doing about as well as you'd expect."
With Ricky Rubio set to return on Tuesday after missing four games with back spasms and Love now out for a good chunk of time, the shorthanded Timberwolves' needs seem to have moved away from another guard and toward a forward. When asked whether the team will target such players, Kahn said he wasn't certain based on the team's shifting circumstances and players like Chase Budinger and Brandon Roy who may return in the coming months.
"I still think we need to add some depth, perhaps we could say everywhere… but obviously, you know, when you lose somebody with Kevin's production capabilities, it's a big hole to fill," Kahn said.
With 10-day contracts becoming an option for teams starting Monday, the Timberwolves can fill the roster spot vacated by Lazar Hayward, but whomever they might be able to sign to that space will do little to help in Love's absence. The talent pool is simply lacking, and that's no surprise. Consequently, no real help will come until — if and when — the Timberwolves are able to orchestrate a bigger trade.
When asked about making such a move, Kahn said that nothing is imminent and highlighted the fact that the NBA is a deadline-driven league. The Timberwolves are talking to teams, he said, but it's very unlikely that anything would happen this month. It's not that the Timberwolves wouldn't like to add some talent, and add it soon, but few teams would bite this early in the season.
"It's very difficult to make trades, especially significant trades, in the month of January," Kahn said. "If you look historically, they almost don't occur."
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