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Minnesota Timberwolves: Why Kevin Love Is an MVP Candidate This Season

The Timberwolves' Star Is Ready to Put Last Season Behind Him and Lead the Team's Return to the Playoffs

Yahoo Contributor Network

COMMENTARY | Heading into the 2013-14 season, there are few players that have as many question marks around them as Kevin Love.

The two-time All-Star is coming off a season in which he failed to meet expectations on the court due to a broken hand suffered just before the beginning of the year. He also had a rough time off the court as fans questioned his desire to remain in Minnesota after an interview with Yahoo's Adrian Wojnarowski in which he bashed the direction of the team.

A year later, Love has shown up in terrific shape to training camp and has been unwilling to talk about last season to local reporters. He's been seen with an edge in his eyes and for all the questions that fans have about his future, we know this about his present:

He's about to unleash one of the angriest MVP campaigns the NBA has ever seen.

Love wants people to remember who he is. He also wants them to know that he can carry one of the NBA's cursed franchises back to the playoffs and play a big part in doing so. That figures to happen as the Timberwolves have pieced together his most compelling supporting cast to date.

Gone is the source of Love's frustration in former vice president of basketball operations David Kahn. He has been replaced with an executive that knows a thing or two about successful teams in Flip Saunders.

As a result, Love has quality supporting pieces such as free-agent signee Kevin Martin and a complete bench featuring Ronny Turiaf and Corey Brewer while convincing Nikola Pekovic to sign a five-year extension to ensure one of the NBA's best frontcourts will be together for the foreseeable future.

With Ricky Rubio being a pass-first point guard that knows how to feed his teammates, every aspect around Love is set up for him to succeed. Then, the edge comes into play.

After last season's disaster, Love is ready to be mentioned with the elite players in the NBA. While everyone is talking about LeBron James and Carmelo Anthony as possible MVP candidates, Love feels slighted he's not in the conversation.

That goes deeper than just being ignored in national circles, as Love also feels slighted that Kahn wanted to save a five-year max deal for Rubio instead of the current face of the franchise despite his elite level of play.

Love is tired of losing and wants to be a part of a winner. It's possible that with several solid seasons, he will stay in Minnesota and become that franchise fixture that Kevin Garnett was for the early part of the 2000s.

For now, Minnesota fans would accept a return to the playoffs and an MVP Award to go with it.

Chris Schad is a lifelong Timberwolves follower who has seen a plenty of losing efforts during the franchise's history. His work has also been published on Bleacher Report and Pro Football Spot. You can follow him on Twitter @crishad.

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