Timberwolves will host Cavs in late January
With the Minnesota Timberwolves hitting the reset button on their roster with the all-but-approved Kevin Love-to-Cleveland trade, few dates on their 2014-15 NBA schedule can be circled as must-see games.
Then there’s Jan. 31.
That Saturday night is when the Cavaliers and their likely new all-star power forward are slotted for their only visit to Minnesota, according to the NBA schedule released Wednesday.
The reaction from Wolves fans at Target Center could be hostile after Love made it clear to owner Glen Taylor that he didn’t want to be a part of the franchise’s long-term future.
Pending NBA approval, the six-year Wolves standout is expected to be traded to Cleveland to join LeBron James and make the Cavs front-runners in the Eastern Conference as soon as Aug. 23, the first day under league rules that Cavs rookie Andrew Wiggins can be traded.
“I’m saying it’s most likely (he is dealt on Aug. 23 or 24) because Kevin has made it pretty clear that that’s what he wants to do,” Taylor told the Pioneer Press in early August.
The Wolves — likely with Wiggins, the No. 1 pick in June’s draft — will travel to Cleveland on Dec. 23.
The Wolves will open the season Oct. 29 at Memphis, the first time since 2000 their first game is on the road. The home opener is the next night, Oct. 30, against Detroit.
The Wolves essentially will have a six-game, 10-day road trip near the start of the season. The Nov. 12 game against Houston in the middle of the trip is technically a home game, but that will be played in Mexico City.
The Wolves will have four homestands of four games, and the schedule includes 19 sets of games on consecutive nights. They will have four nationally televised games.
An extended all-star break between games on Feb. 11 and Feb. 20 means the Wolves will only play 11 games that month, down from at least 15 in other full months of the season.