Minnesota’s Hometown Heroes

Minnesota’s Hometown Heroes


THANK YOU, JOHN. IF YOU HAVE A QUESTION FOR JOHN, EMAIL US BY GOING TO THE WCCO.COM/LINKS. WHEN THAT — IN THE NBA DRAFT, IT COMPLETED A PRETTY COOL QUINTET IN MINNESOTA SPORTS. MAKE EACH OF THE BIG FIVE PROTEINS IN TOWN HAVE AT LEAST ONE MINNESOTA NATIVE ON THE ROSTER. WE GOT THEM ALL TOGETHER AT TARGET FIELD. LINDSAY WILL FROM THE LINKS, ZACH BARICCI FROM THE WILES, ADAM P LYNN FROM THE VIKINGS, TYSON JONES AND — PERKINS. THEY TALKED ABOUT WHAT IT IS LIKE TO BE A PRO ATHLETE IN YOUR HOME STATE. THE REWARDS, CHALLENGES AND EVERYTHING IN BETWEEN. LET’S START WITH AN EASY
ONE. WHAT’S GOOD ABOUT PLAYING IN YOUR HOME STATE. WHAT MAKES IT FUN, WHAT MAKES IT REWARDING? I THINK THE FANS TEND TO GRAVITATE TOWARD ONE OF THEM. YOU KNOW, WITH SOMEONE THAT GREW UP HERE. WE HAVE ALL BEEN IN THEIR POSITION, KIDS IN MINNESOTA HAVE ALL BEEN THERE. I THINK IT IS KIND OF COOL TO HAVE THAT RELATE ABILITY FOR THE GAME. AT THE END OF THE GAME, DID NOT FEEL GOOD AT ALL. LOOKING DOWN, HOLDING THE JERSEY IN YOUR HAND. IT IS COLD FOR US HAVING GROWN UP WATCHING ALL OF THESE TEAMS FROM MINNESOTA, TO NOW BE A PART OF IT AND ADD TO THAT SUCCESS, REALLY, MEANS A LOT, I THINK FOR ALL OF US. YOU LOOK UP IN THE STANDS AND THINKS, I WAS ONE OF THOSE KIDS AND HOW SPECIAL THAT IS. ESPECIALLY FROM MINNESOTA, ONE OF US, FEELING LIKE IF I CAN DO IT, ANYONE CAN DO IT. AND, KNOWING THAT THERE IS SOME KID THAT THINGS, MAN, I WANT TO BE HIM SOMEDAY IS A PRETTY SPECIAL FEELING. WHAT ARE THE CHALLENGES? WHAT ARE THE HARD PARTS OF PLAYING IN YOUR STATE? EXPECTATION LEVELS ARE HIGH FOR YOU. AS MUCH AS THEY WANT TO SEE YOU DO WELL FROM THE FLIPSIDE, IF YOU ARE NOT DOING WELL, THEY ARE STILL LOOKING AT YOU AND YOU ARE STILL PERFORMING, THEY WILL LET EVERYONE KNOW. SOMETIMES YOU GET MORE CREDIT THAN YOU DESERVE AND SOMETIMES YOU TAKE MORE HEAT THAN YOU DESERVE. IF YOU STRUGGLE IN ANOTHER STATE, YOU ARE NOT THE HOMETOWN GUY, WHY IS THIS GUY DOING THAT? I THINK WE FACE MORE PRESSURE BECAUSE OF THAT, IT’S A DOUBLE- EDGED SWORD. BUT, THE STAKES ARE HIGHER AND YOU CAN’T BE AN ANONYMOUS ATHLETE ON A SPORTS TEAM. YOU KNOW, YOU ARE HELD TO A DIFFERENT LEVEL BECAUSE PEOPLE SEE YOU AS A PURE. AS ANOTHER PERSON FROM MINNESOTA. IF PEOPLE COULD UNDERSTAND HOW THINGS ARE DIFFERENT FROM A FAN’S PERSPECTIVE VERSUS ATHLETES, YOU ARE GREW UP AS FANS. WHAT DO YOU ALL KNOW NOW THAT YOU COULD ONLY KNOW BY DOING IT? AS A FAN GROWING UP YOU ALWAYS THINK, THE VIKINGS PLAY. SO YOU THINK THE REST OF THE WEEK, THEY ARE JUST CHILLING. NOW, YOU REALIZE THE COMMITMENT IN THE WEIGHT ROOM, THE COMMITMENT IN THE FILM ROOM, ALL ABOUT THAT GOES INTO IT. BY THE TIME THERE IS AGAIN, THERE IS PROBABLY, I DON’T KNOW HOW MANY HOURS OF WORK THAT HAS COME BEFORE THAT. YOU HEAR IT A LOT. I HEAR IT A LOT. YOU HAVE A FOUR-MONTH OFF- SEASON, YOU’RE SO LUCKY. IT’S NOT REALLY LIKE THAT. THE GREAT ONES ARE WORKING ALL THE TIME AND THEIR OFF-SEASON IS MORE IMPORTANT PROBABLY THAN ANY OTHER SEASON. I WILL ASK YOU TO IMAGINE A SCENARIO WHERE YOU’VE GOT TO LEAVE AND GO SOMEWHERE ELSE. HOW HARD, OR NOT HARD WOULD THAT BE? AT THIS POINT, I’M VERY FORTUNATE TO BE IN THAT SITUATION, PERSONALLY, I CAN MAKE THAT DECISION. I PROBABLY WOULDN’T GO ANYWHERE ELSE. I’M AT THE POINT IN MY CAREER WHERE PROBABLY I WILL EITHER BE PLAYING HERE, OR NOTHING, I GUESS. IF THAT MEANS TREADING YOU, GETTING YOU READY FOR ANOTHER TEAM, I MEAN, IT IS WHAT IT IS. YOU HAVE TO JUST KIND OF FOLLOW IT AND MOVE ON, AND BE OKAY WITH WHATEVER THE NEXT STEP MAY BE. EVEN THOUGH IT WOULD HURT. NOT A LOT OF PEOPLE PLAY IN ONE SPOT THEIR WHOLE CAREER. I AM PRETTY FORTUNATE TO BE HERE FOR FOUR YEARS. EVERY YEAR AFTER THAT, IT IS A
BLESSING. AND HOPEFULLY I CAN CONTINUE TO PLAY MY ENTIRE CAREER HERE. I DON’T KNOW IF THAT’S GOING TO HAPPEN, BUT IF I NEED TO GO SOMEWHERE ELSE, I WILL FIGURE IT OUT. MY FAMILY WILL FIGURE IT OUT. IT WILL BE TOUGH, YOU KNOW, BUT I THINK YOU HAVE TO UNDERSTAND THE BUSINESS SIDE OF SPORTS. YOU SOUND LIKE A 95 YEAR DEAL. [ LAUGHTER ] WHY NOT? INTERESTING. THERE’S A LOT MORE. WE POSTED THE ENTIRE 30 MINUTE INTERVIEW IN THREE PARTS ALL ON
WCCO.COM. AND AN EXTENDED VERSION WILL

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