Prior to the 2010-2011 NBA season, I conceived of an ambitious project to write short, non-fiction prose poem biographies of all ~400 NBA players. I started with the Minnesota Timberwolves, who, at the time, had one of the more eclectic rosters in the league. After maybe 40 hours of writing, I finished nine biographies and gave up on the project as a whole. I tried submitting the results to prominent literary journals of the time (6×6, La Petit Zine, Diagram, jubilat), wistfully hoping someone would see some merit in them. No one did.
Two years later, Tim and Gene were kicking around an idea for an HTMLGiant newsletter-type publication, which would include original writing next to interviews and other articles (I think?). Tim asked if I had anything to contribute; I think the only guideline was “something chill re: style.” I sent the Minnesota Timberwolves bios and they were enthusiastically accepted, but the newsletter never fully materialized.
Things change and things don’t change. I still like these a lot and thought I’d share them. S/O Tim, Gene, and Blake.
2010 – 2011 Minnesota Timberwolves
Brian Cardinal is the only player in Purdue University history to receive the “Mr. Hustle” and “Courage” awards four years in a row. In college he received the nickname “The Custodian.” He has played for 5 NBA teams in 10 years. On September 18th 2009, he tweeted about being stuck on an airplane. As a member of the Minnesota Timberwolves, he was traded to the New York Knicks, waived from their roster, then re-signed by the Timberwolves 35 days later.
Corey Brewer is 6’9” and weighs 185 pounds. He is the son of Pee Wee Brewer, a garbage collector. In college, he missed 3 games due to mono. He recorded the first ever triple-double in University of Florida history with 15 points, 10 rebounds, and 13 assists in a 43-point blowout of Jacksonville University. He also drew 6 defensive charges in that game.
Michael Beasley attended 6 schools in 5 states during his 4-year high school basketball career. He was kicked out of prestigious Oak Hill Academy after writing his name on the headmaster’s car. He has two sisters: Mychaela Beasley and Tiffany Couch.
Kevin Love is a nephew of Mike Love, a member of the Beach Boys. His dad is Stan Love, a former NBA and ABA player. On November 12th 2010, he scored 31 points and grabbed 31 rebounds. He was named the 2010-2011 NBA’s Most Improved Player. He was once featured in an episode of Sports Science making a 90-foot shot in 98 attempts.
In his freshman year at the University of North Carolina, Wayne Ellington scored 19 points on his 19th birthday. The Tar Heels won that game, 89-98. The next year, in a Final Four game against Kansas, he scored 18 points. The Tar Heels lost that game. In the 2009 National Championship game, Wayne scored 19 points, the Tar Heels won, and he was named the tournament’s most outstanding player. His girlfriend wears a shoe size 8.
On March 4th 2010, he tweeted “Yeah I’m 22 get over it!!!” In an interview, he said if he had a time machine, he’d “go forward in time… hundreds of years.”
Darko Milicic was drafted by the Detroit Pistons with the 2nd pick in the 2003 draft, ahead of future superstars Carmelo Anthony (drafted 3rd), Chris Bosh (4th), and Dwyane Wade (5th). Along with Sam Bowie, who was drafted ahead of Michael Jordan in 1984, Darko is widely considered one of the most regrettable draft picks in NBA history. On December 8th 2008, Darko tore his jersey in half after being called for a foul. The jersey was later auctioned off for charity, raising $927 for St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital in Memphis.
Anthony Randolph was born in Germany to American parents serving in the military. He is 6’11” and has been lauded for his length, versatility, and athleticism, but criticized for his on-court decision making. He is left handed. He has played for 3 teams in 4 seasons. One assistant coach said he is “still trying to find out who he is as a basketball player.” On October 28th 2010 he attended his first hockey game.
Jonny Flynn was drafted with the 6th overall pick in 2009. He is 6 feet tall and 185 lbs. On May 3rd 2010, he tweeted “Sitting, staring at a blank screen. Deciding whether or not I should sit in silence.” On May 27th 2010, he tweeted “I wonder what kobe is thinking.” On October 30th 2010, he tweeted “I HATE movies that have animals dominating humans in sports!” On December 9th 2010, he tweeted “Nas lost me after he started talking about the Solar system and all that.” On February 6th 2011, he tweeted “Sometimes I don’t understand the things I see.” On February 10th 2011, he tweeted “I’m in a cab, in another city and the driver is asking me for directions.” He hasn’t tweeted anything since.