From 1 to 35,535: Tom Garrick Q&A


For those of you new to the "From 1 to 35,535" series, the title refers to minutes played. My intention is to review every player who has ever stepped onto the court in a Timberwolves' uniform, from the guy with the fewest minutes played (one!) all the way to KG (the 35,5350-minute man).

The series was more or less on hiatus during the season, but I will post the profiles as regularly as I can during the long months of watching other teams in the playoffs, debating the draft, and discussing rumors about trades, signings, and front office moves.

We pick up with Tom Garrick, who played the 28th fewest minutes for Minnesota (112 during the 1991-92 season). Coming out of the University of Rhode Island, Garrick was drafted 45th overall by the Clippers. After four years in the NBA, he played in the CBA before heading to Europe for five seasons. At 6'2, 185 lbs.,"The Chief" was a shooting guard.

Since his playing days ended, he has coached womens' basketball, first at his alma mater and currently at Vanderbilt, where he has been an assistant since 2009.


Tom was kind enough to take time to answer a few questions about his brief tenure as a Timberwolf.

1 - After three seasons with the Clippers, you had a very busy 1991-92 season, playing for three teams. After the Spurs and before the Mavericks, you spent two and a half months in Minnesota as a Timberwolf. What do you remember about your time here - or is it all a blur?

TG: The thing I recall most about my time in Minnesota, and the thing I was very thankful for, was how fascinated I was that most of downtown is connected by sky-walks.

2 - That Wolves team was bad, winning only 15 games. Yet at least four players have become head coaches - you, Sam Mitchell, Scott Brooks, and Ty Corbin. Do you think that is just coincidence?

TG: I do think the fact that so many players from that team have gone on to be coaches is a coincidence. I contend that you can look at most teams in the league and see a number of people who could be coaches, if they so desired. It not only takes a good athlete to be a pro it takes a guy with a pretty decent understanding of the game. Plus we were so bad that you had a lot of time to play "Monday morning coach." LOL

3 - Unlike the three others who became coaches, you've made your mark in women's basketball. What is the biggest difference coaching female players?

TG: The biggest difference, I’ve found coaching women , is there is a lot more emotion that is in play. Guys have the ability, or the emotional instability (I’m sure women would say), to compartmentalize. Off court stuff doesn’t affect us as much. The court becomes our safe haven. Women tend to want to deal with their problems before they can move on and play.

4 - Do you ever stay in touch with any of the other former Timberwolves?

TG: I have not had contact with the guys I worked with in Minnesota.

5 - Have you been back to the Twin Cities since your NBA career ended?

TG: I’ve spent some time in Minnesota, post playing days. High school and AAU basketball is very talent rich in that area. I recruit in the area from time to time.


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