Towns 'still dealing with a lot of shit' after COVID-19 struggles

David Sherman / National Basketball Association / Getty

Karl-Anthony Towns missed 13 games last season after being diagnosed with COVID-19, and the disease significantly impacted the Minnesota Timberwolves star beyond the court.

Towns' mom died from COVID-19 in April 2020 during the start of the pandemic. The virus also killed his uncle and five other family members. Towns was left to reflect on his tough year while also recovering from his own battle with COVID-19.

“I’ve had a lot of situations this year where things were just too much for me,” Towns told Sports Illustrated's Michael Pina. “I just remember (quarantining) in the house, and it was more than just COVID for me. I felt like I was going through a holistic journey.”

Although Towns eventually made his way back and played like his usual self, the two-time All-Star wasn't focused on basketball.

“That money shit don’t mean shit to me,” said Towns. “Time is the real thing we losing every day. I just really didn’t think I could play the game of basketball the way I want to represent myself in the NBA.

"I didn’t want to represent myself in a bad way. There’d be a lot of times we’d play a game. Game’s over. And I’m not even in there. I’m doing my own thing. I’m in the bathroom looking at myself, wondering if this is the man that I really think I am. I had 40. I’m still not happy with the man I see in the mirror. I’m still dealing with a lot of shit.”

Towns received treatment at a local hospital, and the center lost 50 pounds over the nearly one month he was out.

"I was as big as D’Angelo (Russell)," Towns said. "I was as big as our guards. You think I’m gonna play center?”

A high-calorie diet eventually helped Towns regain his weight, but the 25-year-old continues to struggle mentally with a virus that was affecting him so much.

Towns spent his offseason focussing on himself, which he couldn't do during the campaign. Now he's finding his groove again with the 2021-22 season nearing and the young Timberwolves hoping they can end the franchise's three-year playoff drought.

“I'm like 'I’m ready,'" he said. "If we had to start today. I’m more than prepared. I’m mentally prepared to go to Minnesota, live in Minnesota, play this game of basketball. I’ve been working tremendously hard this offseason. I’ve been working on not only my body but just working on me.”

Towns 'still dealing with a lot of shit' after COVID-19 struggles
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