Exclusive: Up Close And Personal With Karl-Anthony Towns

Karl-Anthony Towns working out at St. Joe's on Monday. From left Andrew Turco, Towns, St. Joe's coach Dave Turco and Nicole Turco
Karl-Anthony Towns working out at St. Joe's on Monday. From left Andrew Turco, Towns, St. Joe's coach Dave Turco and Nicole Turco
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METUCHEN — Picked as the NBA’s No. 1 draft choice by the Minnesota Timberwolves last Thursday night in Brooklyn, Karl-Anthony Towns was spotted in a Minnesota gym on Friday at midnight, working on his game.

On Monday morning, he was at his old high school at St. Joseph in Metuchen working out once again. Over the course of an hour or so, the Piscataway resident took over 100 3-pointers, worked on his sky hook, he ran, worked on free throw shooting, even worked on his dunking.

While Towns was saying how some of the other top draft choices were taking a few days off, the 6-foot-11 center who played one season at the  University of Kentucky was determined to keep working on his craft.

Karl-Anthony Towns doing community work in Minnesota

Karl-Anthony Towns doing community work in Minnesota

So instead of basking in the glow of being selected No. 1 in the draft and enjoying the glamorous lifestyle which comes along with it, the 19-year-old Towns was working to get better.

“That’s how he got here,” said his high school coach at St. Joe’s, Dave Turco. “Karl’s work ethic is second to none. He’s always worked to be the best he can be. He made a lot of sacrifices to get to this level and I’m just so proud of him.”

Said Towns on his drive to get right into the gym since draft night: “All of us came into different situations. I was blessed and honored to be drafted by the Minnesota Timberwolves. They haven’t made the playoffs in 11 years and I want to stop that streak right now and the work starts now to do that. Putting the work in the gym and putting the hours in is going to change our chances of being a playoff team and making us better.”

On Monday, The Authority caught up with Towns, working out with Turco, whose son Andrew and daughter Nicole provided the rebounding. We were able to shoot some rare workout video mixed in with our interview.

It should be noted that Towns was not expecting a crowd to be there, but a basketball day camp called Hoops America was already in progress with about 30-40 kids going through drills. St. Joseph Athletic Director Jerry Smith put the curtain down the middle of the gym so Towns could work out in the half court alone.

After the workout, Towns took pictures and signed autographs for every camper.

Then it was off to North Jersey for a weight-lifting session.

So much for the glamorous lifestyle of the NBA’s No. 1 draft choice.

 

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