Former University of Arizona forward Derrick Williams is waiting out the NBA lockout, hoping to play for the Wolves sooner than later.

David Joles, Star Tribune file

2day's 2 cents: Q&A Derrick Williams

  • Article by: JERRY ZGODA
  • Star Tribune
  • September 26, 2011 - 7:15 AM

In any other year, Timberwolves draft pick Derrick Williams would head to his first NBA training camp by the end of this week.

This, of course, isn't just any other year and Williams isn't bound for Mankato. On Saturday, he instead was in Chicago, appearing for his sponsor Under Armour at a two-day camp for top prep players.

While there, the draft's second overall pick talked with Timberwolves beat reporter Jerry Zgoda by phone about everything from the current NBA labor lockout to new coach Rick Adelman.

Q With players locked out and no end in sight, what have you been doing all summer?

A Just working hard really, training. I've been going back and forth from L.A. to Arizona, taking a couple summer classes and doing some things for Under Armour, like today when I'm just helping out with high school players. I've been to Baltimore [Under Armour headquarters] a couple times. I've been everywhere, really.

Q You don't know yet about life on an NBA court, but you already know all about its business side, don't you?

A Exactly. I just think everybody wants to play. I don't think anybody wants to go anywhere else in the world. We all want to play against the best players in the world. But there's nothing we can really do about it, just wait until whenever this thing gets settled.

Q Do you regret leaving college and declaring early for last summer's draft?

A No, I don't think so. This was my best opportunity coming out. You can't do much better than the No. 2 pick. I've got no regrets, coming out this year to play against the best players in the world. It'll all get settled.

Q You don't have a pro contract yet, but you've got a new coach. What do you know about him?

A He's a great coach. He's done a lot of great things with the Kings and Houston. [Rockets guard] Chase Budinger played at Arizona, and I know him. He's a good guy to ask. He says he's a good coach overall, a guy who works with what he has.

Q Have you spent much time with your new teammates in L.A.?

A Not a whole lot. I've seen Kevin Love, worked out with Wes [Johnson] and [Michael] Beasley. But Wes now is back in school at Syracuse and I'm just working out with my trainer, getting ready. I'm going back to Minnesota in a couple weeks to see where I'm going to live. I'm looking forward to it. I've actually started shopping for a few warm coats.

Q You played pickup ball with Ricky Rubio when you were here in June. Your impressions?

A That's the first time I've actually seen him play. Everybody has seen Ricky on YouTube. He's everything you've seen on YouTube: those behind-the-back passes, crazy things. I'm really looking forward to playing with him. I've never really played with a pure point guard like that.

Q So ... when will Timberwolves fans finally get to see you play?

A I hope it starts on time. Everybody wants to see the season start on time. A young team like us really could use a full training camp. We need all the time we can get together.

© 2018 Star Tribune