Bill Willoughby Offers Advice to Garnett

June 28, 1995
KG's Rookie Year

Bill Willoughby, who jumped from high school to the NBA in 1975, had some observations and recommendations for 19-year-old Wolves draftee Kevin Garnett:

On skipping college: ``He could sign a contract worth $30 million or $40 million, and people are telling him to go to college? Come on. ... Few people have that kind of opportunity, a chance to put money in the bank and be secure.''

On playing time: ``I told Kevin to stay confident and love the game, even if he's coming off the bench in the last 10 minutes. But deep down I know the only way to be happy is if you're playing. If the coach keeps him sitting, he'll have trouble. If they give Kevin the ball, just like if they'd given it to me, he'll be an all-star.''

On making the adjustment to the NBA: ``He's not just a ballplayer now, he's a professional. It's a man's game.''

On ego: ``He's already on the cover of magazines, on TV. ... He's ahead of a lot of 19-year-olds right now, but they'll catch up.''

On financial advisers (Willoughby says he was swindled out of much of the money he earned in eight NBA seasons: ``They'll tell you they're taking care of your money and instead they're ripping you off. I told Kevin to put his own money in the bank.''

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