A man with what he calls a platform to protect, Timberwolves star Karl Anthony-Towns was asked after Friday's comeback home victory over Houston if he had any response to recent mass shootings in Atlanta and the increase in violence against Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders.
Yes, he did.
"It's so sad," he said. "There's so many great people in this world and the situation is sad because to be discriminated like that, it doesn't belong in this world. It doesn't belong in society. I send all my prayers and condolences to all the families affected and everyone in that community. You know, it's sad. It's just one of those things, you can't comprehend."
Eight people, including six of Asian descent, were killed by a shot at three different massage or spa businesses.
"You know the devil is working overtime all day, every day to try to hurt us, but there's just moments you have to sit back and think," Towns said. "I don't even have kids, but when I think about my niece, nephew, sister going outside, you just never know. When I see those things, it makes me want to call my family more, tell them I love them.
"You just never know what life has for you. You never know when time is run out in your life. I can't say it enough."
Towns called himself appreciative for being asked and given the opportunity to answer.
"I got to use my platform better to help at least spread awareness and help protect people," Towns said. "I want to thank you again for asking the question. It gives me something to think about tonight, finding ways I can help use my platform for the safety of others and just try to spread awareness and end the kind of violence that has been happening recently.
"It is nasty and it doesn't belong in society at all. We have such a great platform as NBA players to make change. This is one of them that we got to work on."
• Coach Chris Finch on guard Jordan McLaughlin's 21-minute return Friday after he hadn't played since March 3 because of the NBA's health and safety protocols: "I thought he was phenomenal. He really came in and played well. He created great pace. He got the ball moving. Defensively, he was into the ball. He was kind of a pest…Really, really happy with his performance."
• Wolves guard Josh Okogie (health and safety protocols) and D'Angelo Russell (left knee surgery) remained out for Saturday's rematch against the Rockets.