New Timberwolves forward Thaddeus Young is a seven-year NBA veteran with a wife and two kids. But he also just turned 26 and, despite a strong level of maturity, would still be considered a relative youngster in the league if not for all his even fresher-faced new teammates. The Star Tribune’s Michael Rand caught up with Young on a variety of subjects:
Q How long did it take you to get to this point in your career where everybody considers you a veteran leader?
A Probably a couple years back. I was always a player who didn’t say a whole lot, but I had to start shape-shifting into the role of going out and leading the team. They named four captains [on the 2011-12 76ers]. It was Andre Iguodala, Elton Brand, me and Louis Williams. We understood the game, and [coach Doug Collins] understood us.
Q You were part of a pretty extensive rebuilding project in Philadelphia. They’re rebuilding in Minnesota, too, but does it feel different from what you were coming from?
A It does. I think the situation in Philly is much different. It’s the same process, but this team is much more competitive and it’s a better roster. Philly, they were getting rid of everybody and getting worse. But I think [Philadelphia GM Sam Hinkie] is doing a great job and has made some big moves.
Q Getting traded was kind of a long time coming for you because rumors have been out there for more than a year. But when you finally get the call that it’s going down, what is that like?
A It was one of those things that was bittersweet. It was a sad moment but a happy moment. I have a chance to come to a fairly good team. We lost Kevin Love, but we added four guys — Zach [LaVine], Andrew Wiggins, Anthony Bennett and me. This is a great chance for us to make some noise. We’re young and athletic. We also have Ricky Rubio, Corey Brewer, Kevin Martin and Pek [Nikola Pekovic]. A lot of good guys on the team.
Q But you also have to move your family. How hard is that?
A Yeah, I have two boys, ages 1 and 4. My wife made it to town [Wednesday] with the kids. We’re going to go look for a place. We’re trying to move things along rather quickly. It’s a situation where you have to go with the flow.
Q Did you have someone, when you were 19, who took you under his wing when you were a rookie?
A Yeah, he actually works here now — Calvin Booth. Also Donyell Marshall, Theo Ratliff, Reggie Evans. I think Reggie was one of the biggest people who has helped me in my career.
Q Knowing you went through that, what kinds of things will you try to impart on Wiggins, who seems like he has some maturity already?
A Yeah, he’s very mature. He’s been very hyped, and he’s handled it well. He’s levelheaded and a perfect guy for the situation. I can tell him from experiences what to do on the court, what not to do, how to be a professional.
Q Anything about you we don’t know — fun stuff off the court?
A Nah, I’m a pretty simple guy. I’m laid-back and I like going to the movies a lot. I like to have fun. I’m still young, so I do all the things young guys do.
|Baltimore - W. Chen||6:05 PM|
|NY Yankees - M. Pineda|
|Kansas City - D. Duffy||6:05 PM|
|Cleveland - C. Carrasco|
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|Toronto - J. Happ|
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|(11) UCLA||9/25/14 9:00 PM|
|(15) Arizona State|
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|(9) Michigan State|
|Northwestern||9/27/14 11:00 AM|
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|Iowa||9/27/14 11:00 AM|
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|Colorado State||9/27/14 11:30 AM|
|Western Mich||9/27/14 11:30 AM|
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|Akron||9/27/14 12:30 PM|
|Bowling Green||9/27/14 2:00 PM|
|Arkansas||9/27/14 2:30 PM|
|(6) Texas A&M|
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|(1) Florida State||9/27/14 2:30 PM|
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|Colorado||9/27/14 3:00 PM|
|Louisiana Tech||9/27/14 3:00 PM|
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|(16) Stanford||9/27/14 3:15 PM|
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|(22) Ohio State|
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|(13) So Carolina|
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|North Carolina||9/27/14 6:00 PM|
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|Troy||9/27/14 6:00 PM|
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|Memphis||9/27/14 6:30 PM|
|(10) Ole Miss|
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|Washington St||9/27/14 7:00 PM|
|(8) Notre Dame||9/27/14 7:00 PM|
|(7) Baylor||9/27/14 7:00 PM|
|UNLV||9/27/14 7:00 PM|
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|Illinois||9/27/14 8:00 PM|
|Oregon State||9/27/14 9:30 PM|
|Nevada||9/27/14 9:30 PM|
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