The Minnesota Timberwolves host Kevin Love and the Cleveland Cavaliers on Saturday, and the Wolves want to be very clear about their feelings for their departed All-Star in his return. Love, after all, served as the totality of the Timberwolves' offense for long stretches of the six years he played in Minnesota.
So, on Wednesday, the team aired this video hyping "#TheReturn" of the player fans have been waiting to welcome back.
We won't spoil the surprise.
That's cold, even for Minnesota in January.
While the video might appear to be all in good fun (with a heavy dose of snark), it might run deeper than that.
When the Wolves played in Cleveland last month, Minnesota coach Flip Saunders declined to answer any questions about Love before the game.
"League policy is not to talk about players from another team," Saunders said. "So I'll talk about my guys and that's it."
Saunders was taking liberties with the rule. Of course coaches are allowed to, and even expected to, talk about opposing players. It only becomes an issue of tampering when a coach's comments could be construed as a recruitment pitch.
And based on how the Wolves have handled Love's departure so far, it doesn't appear they'll be trying to recruit him back anytime soon.