It was after the Timberwolves' 123-104 loss to the Grizzlies on Monday, and Rondae Hollis-Jefferson was still on the floor as the Target Center arena workers were starting to shut everything down for the night.
Hollis-Jefferson, a forward who signed a training camp deal, made the most of what time the Wolves gave him Monday night — 17 points on 6-for-6 shooting plus three rebounds, two steals and two blocks.
But Hollis-Jefferson wasn't resting on his laurels for the evening. He was out on the floor with a few other young players and coaches getting up some extra shots.
On an otherwise dreary night for the Wolves, as they try to shake off the rust from an extended, distressing offseason due in large part to COVID-19, Hollis-Jefferson was a bright spot. He provided multiple commendable defensive plays and injected some energy on the offensive end.
"I'm a competitor at the end of the day," Hollis-Jefferson said. "Any time I come out and compete it shows with how I play, the energy. I feel like everything else will naturally come when the time is right. I'm definitely looking forward to being out there competing in the regular season."
He made the Wolves take notice, and according to guard Josh Okogie, Hollis-Jefferson has done that in the short time he has been with the team.
"Since Day 1 Rondae has been great," Okogie said. "He tells me all the time we got to be the ones that anchor the defense down. Just seeing him play is very inspiring. The energy he brought out [Monday], and he just makes you ask yourself, what kind of guy wouldn't want to play with a guy like Rondae?
"He had the whole bench involved, everybody involved, coaches involved. You just fall in love with a guy like Rondae."
Hollis-Jefferson, 25, spent his first four seasons with the Nets, where he crossed paths with guard D'Angelo Russell and assistant coach Pablo Prigioni.
Even though he's listed at 6--6, Hollis-Jefferson can play power forward, a position of need for the Wolves. He has averaged 9.3 points in 294 NBA games and played for the Raptors last season.
A native of Chester, Pa., which is outside Philadelphia, Hollis-Jefferson said he also has a relationship with Wolves center Karl-Anthony Towns, a New Jersey native, that goes back to when they were kids.
"A lot of the AAU teams, we combined and we were at a lot of camps and things like that," Hollis-Jefferson said. "Just competing and having fun and being kids at the end of the day. We could tell you a couple stories. It was always funny, just us two and that dynamic — two oversized, goofy kids who loved to play basketball."
It was those ties to the Wolves that drew Hollis-Jefferson to sign with them.
"Just seeing the roster and seeing the staff that they had and the people in the organization definitely played a part in coming here," Hollis-Jefferson said. "At the end of the day you want to be somewhere where you know people and egos can be put aside and they're here to get better."
Hollis-Jefferson will have one more chance to show the Wolves he can make them better on Thursday against the Mavericks. Then the regular season starts the following week. It's unclear whether Hollis-Jefferson will be on the opening night roster, but it won't be for lack of trying.
"My job is to come in and create a spark," Hollis-Jefferson said. "Come in, compete and play hard. That's what they brought me here to do."