After Charlotte’s morning shootaround, Al Jefferson was saying how he doesn’t even recognize the Wolves anymore. Well, fans that watched Big Al play for the Wolves for three seasons might not recognize him either.
Indeed, after he lost 32 pounds over the summer, maybe we should stop calling him Big Al and start calling him Slim Al.
“I guess so, right?” he said, laughing. “But I’m still Big Al. I still have a big head.’’
While he might not recognize the current Wolves, he is certainly impressed. Jefferson, who was part of the trade that sent Kevin Garnett to Boston years ago, is thrilled to see KG back with the Wolves. And he is very impressed with the Wolves young players, including rookie Karl-Anthony Towns.’’
“I always had a lot of respect for KG,” Jefferson said. “For him to come back and finish his career where it started? That was really cool. And to help the young guys? Man, you can tell his imprint already at the beginning of the season. It’s a totally different mindset. They’re still young, but you can tell, KG and Tayshaun Prince, they older guys, are really leaving their mark.’’
Especially on defense, Jefferson said. “They have some big boys in place, they protect the rim. And they have guards who can get in passing lanes. And they’re just playing hard, man. That’s one of the things about a young team that’s so scary. They’re going to play hard every night.’’
On Towns in particular? “His footwork and skill level, for a 6-10, 6-11 guys?” Jefferson said. “He can put the ball on the floor like a guard. And that’s what’s messing it up for guys like me. All these big men are coming into the league will all types of skills and s stuff. You can see he has a lot of upside. I can see why he went No. 1.’’