No other NBA player was more affected by COVID-19 than Karl Anthony Towns.
In his first game since losing his mother back in April, Towns refected back on a difficult 2020.
Towns was asked to compare his Timberwolves’ game-to-game mindset this season compared to other years. The answer led Towns to talk about how different of a person he is since he suffered so many losses in his family.
“I’m gonna put it next to my mom,” Towns said of the game ball that he was delivering to his father. … “I’m just happy I got this for her. I told her I wanted to get her this win and get her this ball. I was just happy I was able to get it done.”
Towns’ mother, Jacqueline Cruz-Towns, died on April 13 after dealing with the virus for a month. She is one of seven of his family members he says have died from COVID. Towns says he views his life completely differently now and that he is an entirely different person.
Towns called the game “heavy,” and when asked how he has changed mentally throughout this year, he said he’s essentially a new person.
“I don’t even recognize most of my other games and years I’ve played and how I felt those days,” he said. “If I can be honest with y’all for a second, I mean, I don’t really recall or really care.
“I only know what happened from April 13 on. Because you may see me smiling and stuff, but that Karl died on April 13. He’s never coming back. I don’t remember that man. I don’t know that man. You’re talking to the physical me, but my soul has been killed off a long time ago.”
While Towns’ mental health has been challenged during this global pandemic, he is still carrying on for his family and teammates.