Wolves storm the gym for charity, not salary

  • Article by: JERRY ZGODA , Star Tribune
  • Updated: October 27, 2011 - 12:27 AM

Teammates of Michael Beasley suited up at Osseo for his exhibition game, which was missing some A-list NBA stars.

view larger photos

  

The Timberwolves should be nearing the end of an eight-game preseason schedule intended to prepare them for a grueling 82-game NBA season.

Instead, one could find Wolves forward Michael Beasley and five of his teammates playing a beautified pickup game before several hundred fans in the Osseo High School gym.

Billed as the "Michael Beasley All-Star Classic," the evening instead became something more like "Michael Beasley, Friends and Acquaintances." Organizers promoted the appearance of NBA stars Kevin Durant, Kevin Love, John Wall and DeMarcus Cousins, but Beasley's Wolves teammates Wes Johnson, Anthony Randolph, Anthony Tolliver, Wayne Ellington, Lazar Hayward and lone other NBA player Dorell Wright showed in support instead.

They were there throwing up lob passes and shooting long three-pointers in a cozy high school gym as they remain locked out by owners in a nearly four-month dispute that grew nasty Thursday night when both sides abruptly departed three days' worth of negotiations.

"Obviously I'd rather be in camp and playing preseason games and getting ready for the regular season," said Tolliver, the Wolves' union representative. "But this is a bigger cause than just me. This is for the next five, 10 years, guys coming into the league. We do have to sacrifice a little bit of time -- hopefully not too much longer -- and hopefully both sides can come to their senses and figure something out."

Until they do, Tolliver will remain home in Houston working out, spending time with his family and traveling for an occasional exhibition game. He has played three in Australia and two in Mexico during this lockout, and on Friday he flew into town for the night along with other teammates at the request of Beasley, who said he organized Friday's game for fans who are locked out as well.

Organizers originally priced tickets at between $60 and $300, then changed them to $40 general admission, $100 for VIP reserve and $300 for court seats when it became clear Durant, Love, Wall and No. 2 overall pick Derrick Williams wouldn't play.

Net proceeds will go to St. Jude's and three Twin Cities area charities.

Organizers estimated the audience at 1,200 fans, which might have been a bit generous. Those fans watched the six Wolves players, Golden State's Wright, former WNBA player Tamara Moore and a smattering of summer-league players run and shoot until the Beasleys prevailed over the Visitors 179-170.

"The lockout is very frustrating, and the fans are the main ones suffering," Beasley said. "I'm just doing my part to bring basketball back to Minnesota."

Beasley, Johnson, Ellington and Tolliver all played on one team -- Randolph and Hayward were placed on the other for competitive balance.

"I've worked hard all summer and I've accomplished a lot: my shot, the strength in my body," said Johnson, who is taking classes at Syracuse this fall after spending the summer in Los Angeles. "Now I'm just ready to play. It was fun to get out tonight and see all the guys again. I'm excited with Ricky [Rubio] coming over, Derrick [Williams] and Coach [Rick] Adelman here. I'm so ready to play."

Beasley has played exhibition games from China to New York City's asphalt playgrounds and now Osseo High during the lockout. On Sunday, he is scheduled to play in Durant's charity game in Oklahoma City.

"We just want to play basketball," Beasley said. "The NBA can end, but basketball will never stop."

  • related content

  • Michael Beasley's all-star basketball game with NBA players at Osseo H...

  • Anthony Randolph (15) swatted away the layup attempt of Wolves teammate Michael Beasley on Friday night.

  • NBA

  • get related content delivered to your inbox

  • manage my email subscriptions

ADVERTISEMENT

San Francisco - WP: M. Bumgarner 7 FINAL
Kansas City - LP: J. Shields 1
San Diego 10/23/14 7:25 PM
Denver
Detroit 10/26/14 8:30 AM
Atlanta
Buffalo 10/26/14 12:00 PM
NY Jets
St. Louis 10/26/14 12:00 PM
Kansas City
Houston 10/26/14 12:00 PM
Tennessee
Minnesota 10/26/14 12:00 PM
Tampa Bay
Seattle 10/26/14 12:00 PM
Carolina
Baltimore 10/26/14 12:00 PM
Cincinnati
Miami 10/26/14 12:00 PM
Jacksonville
Chicago 10/26/14 12:00 PM
New England
Philadelphia 10/26/14 3:05 PM
Arizona
Oakland 10/26/14 3:25 PM
Cleveland
Indianapolis 10/26/14 3:25 PM
Pittsburgh
Green Bay 10/26/14 7:30 PM
New Orleans
Washington 10/27/14 7:30 PM
Dallas
Houston 85 FINAL
Miami 90
Indiana 89 FINAL
Minnesota 107
Utah 105 FINAL
Oklahoma City 91
Portland 93 FINAL
Denver 75
Phoenix 114 FINAL
LA Lakers 108
LA Clippers 107 FINAL
Golden State 125
San Jose 3 FINAL
Boston 5
NY Rangers 4 FINAL(OT)
New Jersey 3
Toronto 5 FINAL
NY Islanders 2
Detroit 1 FINAL(OT)
Montreal 2
Arizona 3 FINAL(SO)
Nashville 4
Carolina 1 FINAL
Winnipeg 3
Philadelphia 0 FINAL
Chicago 4
Vancouver 3 FINAL
Dallas 6
Florida 4 FINAL(OT)
Colorado 3
Tampa Bay 2 FINAL(OT)
Calgary 1
Arkansas State 40 FINAL
Louisiana 55
Connecticut 10/23/14 6:00 PM
(18) East Carolina
Miami-Florida 10/23/14 7:00 PM
Virginia Tech
So Florida 10/24/14 6:00 PM
Cincinnati
Troy 10/24/14 6:30 PM
South Alabama
BYU 10/24/14 8:00 PM
Boise State
(6) Oregon 10/24/14 9:00 PM
California
North Texas 10/25/14 11:00 AM
Rice
UAB 10/25/14 11:00 AM
Arkansas
Rutgers 10/25/14 11:00 AM
(16) Nebraska
Maryland 10/25/14 11:00 AM
Wisconsin
Texas 10/25/14 11:00 AM
(11) Kansas State
Minnesota 10/25/14 11:00 AM
Illinois
Memphis 10/25/14 11:00 AM
SMU
North Carolina 10/25/14 11:30 AM
Virginia
San Jose St 10/25/14 12:00 PM
Navy
Northern Ill 10/25/14 12:00 PM
Eastern Mich
(25) UCLA 10/25/14 1:00 PM
Colorado
Akron 10/25/14 1:00 PM
Ball State
Massachusetts 10/25/14 1:00 PM
Toledo
Ohio U 10/25/14 1:00 PM
Western Mich
Ga Southern 10/25/14 1:00 PM
Georgia State
Kent State 10/25/14 1:30 PM
Miami-Ohio
Oregon State 10/25/14 2:30 PM
Stanford
Fla Atlantic 10/25/14 2:30 PM
(23) Marshall
Louisiana Tech 10/25/14 2:30 PM
Southern Miss
(1) Miss State 10/25/14 2:30 PM
Kentucky
Georgia Tech 10/25/14 2:30 PM
Pittsburgh
(22) West Virginia 10/25/14 2:30 PM
Oklahoma State
Texas Tech 10/25/14 2:30 PM
(10) TCU
Michigan 10/25/14 2:30 PM
(8) Michigan State
Boston College 10/25/14 2:30 PM
Wake Forest
Central Mich 10/25/14 2:30 PM
Buffalo
Vanderbilt 10/25/14 3:00 PM
Missouri
Old Dominion 10/25/14 3:00 PM
Western Ky
UNLV 10/25/14 3:00 PM
Utah State
Temple 10/25/14 4:00 PM
UCF
(15) Arizona 10/25/14 5:00 PM
Washington St
Texas-El Paso 10/25/14 6:00 PM
TX-San Antonio
Wyoming 10/25/14 6:00 PM
Colorado State
Syracuse 10/25/14 6:00 PM
(21) Clemson
Texas State 10/25/14 6:00 PM
ULM
(3) Ole Miss 10/25/14 6:15 PM
(24) LSU
(4) Alabama 10/25/14 6:30 PM
Tennessee
So Carolina 10/25/14 6:30 PM
(5) Auburn
(13) Ohio State 10/25/14 7:00 PM
Penn State
(20) USC 10/25/14 9:00 PM
(19) Utah
(14) Arizona State 10/25/14 9:45 PM
Washington
Nevada 10/25/14 10:59 PM
Hawaii
Montreal 10/24/14 5:30 PM
Ottawa
Saskatchewan 10/24/14 8:30 PM
Calgary
Hamilton 10/25/14 3:00 PM
Toronto
Brt Columbia 10/25/14 6:00 PM
Winnipeg
Connect with twitterConnect with facebookConnect with Google+Connect with PinterestConnect with PinterestConnect with RssfeedConnect with email newsletters

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

question of the day

Poll: Which local team are you currently most excited about?

Weekly Question

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

 
Close