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Is Kevin Love The NBA's Most Improved Player?

Should Kevin Love be this year's Most Improved Player when the NBA hands out its annual awards? The Minnesota Timberwolves think so.

In fact, they've even put a new website (612AllStar.com/MIP) together to show why the third-year power forward deserves the end-of-season acknowledgement

Love averaged 14.0 points and 11.0 rebounds per game for the Wolves last season and has upped those averages to 20.2 points and 15.2 rebounds while increasing both his field goal and three-point percentages by at least 20 percent this season.

According to the Wolves' website campaign, those numbers put Love at an elite level as they mean that he is the only player in the league this season to rank among the league's 10 biggest jumps in points per game, rebounds per game three-point shooting percentage.

Other interesting notes from the Most Improved Player campaign:

  • Love has had 11 20/20 games this season, the most in the league since Kevin Willis had 12 during the 1991-92 season.
  • Love has had four games this season with 30+ points and 20+ rebounds. There were only three such games in the NBA all of last season, and only two others this year (Pau Gasol, Dwight Howard) have accomplished this feat.
  • There have only been 16 games this season in which a player has hit at least three treys while also grabbing 15+ rebounds. Love is responsible for 11 of the 16.
  • Love has posted the biggest increase in Win Shares (a statistic that estimates the number of team wins attributable to an individual player) of any player in the league this season, leading Chris Paul, Tyson Chandler and Derrick Rose.

After seeing all of that, I'm wondering why he's not in the race for the MVP award (oh, this). Well, then he should be a shoo-in for the MIP award!

Photographs by Micah Taylor, clairity, and Fibonacci Blue used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.