KG’s Rise To Hall Of Fame Began In St. Cloud
File this under "you learn something new every day." Former Minnesota Timberwolves great Kevin Garnett's NBA career actually began in St. Cloud.
The Wolves raised eyebrows when they used the #5 pick in the 1995 NBA Draft on a high school kid named Kevin Garnett ahead of highly regarded college prospects like Ed O'Bannon, Bryant Reeves and Damon Stoudamire.
As a 19-year old, Garnett headed west from Farragut Academy in Chicago to... St. Cloud, Minnesota? According to NBA.com's Steve Aschburner, the 1995 Minnesota Timberwolves training camp was held at SCSU's Halenbeck Hall:
An old soul resided inside that skinny, smiling 19-year-old who showed up at Halenbeck Hall at St. Cloud (Minn.) State for the first practice of his professional life. Beneath the ball cap and the wired Walkman headphones, Garnett knew fully what he was doing in breaking the NBA’s 20 year-embargo against prep players entering the draft. He knew about Bill Willoughby, Darryl Dawkins and Moses Malone, saw and felt the eyes on him from before that first Sports Illustrated cover. And as far as he was concerned, that “Ready or Not” on the cover was about everybody else, because he damn well knew he was ready.
Garnett survived the two-a-day practices at St. Cloud State and went on to have a Hall of Fame career that included 16 seasons in Minnesota.
KG won the league's MVP award for the 2003-2004 season, the same year he led the Wolves to the Western Conference Finals. He would go on to win a championship with the Celtics a few seasons later.
He finished his career 26,071 points- 18th most in NBA history- along with 11,453 defensive rebounds, which is the second-most in league history,
This summer, Kevin Garnett will be inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall Of Fame after being elected in 2020.