Kyle Anderson said he and Karl-Anthony Towns have known each other since he was around 10 and Towns was 8.
Both grew up in New Jersey and have followed each other’s paths to the NBA since childhood.
“It’s awesome,” Anderson said. “We’ve always watched each other from afar. I’m super proud of him. … We followed each other’s careers in high school, and now it’s fun to be back in Minnesota. It’s pretty awesome.”
Towns said he could see back then what Anderson had brought to the field, but also how much he had contributed to winning on every team he played with. It’s something Wolves are hoping Anderson will bring off the bench for them.
“I know what a winner he is. We grew up together,” Towns said. “…I’ve seen him play the greatest games in New Jersey history…I’ve seen him get wins in those games when they said maybe they couldn’t come with them. I know so what he brings to the table.”
Anderson, who signed in the offseason after playing at Memphis, will be an important part of Wolves’ rotation this season, someone who can play in the frontcourt and provide a defensive presence at all times. He will likely play position four, or power forward. At times last season, the Grizzlies used it to limit towns.
It was in their playoff series that Anderson noticed how up Wolves were and knew he could fit in well during his free agency. He signed a two-year contract worth $18 million.
“The fans were great, then the team played tough, the team played hard,” Anderson said. “You saw the Minnesota owners there every game during the playoffs. That definitely stuck with me. Obviously back then I was focused on trying to win a playoff series. Looking back on it, it was like wow, Minnesota was all in.”
Wolves will be looking to play multiple defensive covers this season whether Rudy Gobert is on the pitch or not. Anderson said that’s something only a few teams can pull off effectively. Anderson said everyone’s responsibilities may differ depending on whether Gobert is on the court or not.
Anderson will try to use his experience and communication skills to help keep everyone on the same page in these situations.
“That’s what good teams can do,” Anderson said. “They’re able to adapt on the fly, everyone can be on the same page. They’re able to talk about a game plan, whether it’s the two covers, one cover or two covers. They can go out and perform it. If we’re going to be the team we say we want to be, we have to be able to go and do it.
Wolves give up on Paschall
Wolves before the game waived Eric Paschall, who was on a two-way deal. Paschall appeared in a pre-season game and was limited by an injury to Achilles, which played into Wolves’ decision to waive him.
“He wasn’t really able to show us what he could do in camp,” coach Chris Finch said. “It was unfortunate because we were very excited to bring him over this summer, but we appreciate his efforts nonetheless.”
On the media day, Paschall opened up about how he considered quitting basketball this summer and the mental health hurdles he faced in coping with the decision before signing with Wolves.
He averaged 9.8 points per game over his three-year career.
McLaughlin OK to play
Guard Jordan McLaughlin was in the lineup after missing two preseason games with a shoulder injury.
“The shoulder was giving me some issues, but I feel like I’m ready to go,” McLaughlin said after practice on Tuesday. “A few good days of training leading up to the season opener.