Minnesota Timberwolves big man Karl-Anthony Towns was visibly emotional in the pregame introductions prior to their first preseason game against the Memphis Grizzlies.  The two-time All-Star previously lost his mom and six other relatives due to complications caused by COVID-19, and that definitely hit him before the game, as shown in this video via via Fox9‘s Pierre Noujaim.

Towns’ mom, Jacqueline Cruz, was 61 when she succumbed back in April. Two weeks ago, more saddening news emerged when Towns revealed to the public that he also lost six other family members to COVID-19.

In their preseason opener against the Grizzlies, the big man played sparingly and chalked up 13 points and eight rebounds through 21 minutes on the floor. D’Angelo Russell also added 14 points, four boards, and three dimes in 22 minutes while top rookie Anthony Edwards struggled in his preseason debut with only five points, four rebounds, and an assist in 25 minutes.

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The Timberwolves eventually lost by a tight margin, 107-105. They have a chance to bounce back against the same opponent a couple of days later as they hosted the Grizzlies once again on their home floor for their second preseason game.

Karl-Anthony Towns tallied better numbers compared to his first outing and generated 14 points, nine rebounds, and five rebounds in 26 minutes. Both Russell and Edwards were also more productive as the former scored 19 points while the latter notched 12 points of his own.

Despite the better individual performances, the Timberwolves were dealt with a lopsided 123-104 loss by the Grizzlies to drop to a winless record in preseason proceedings thus far.

The team is hoping that Karl-Anthony Towns will be able to gather himself once the regular season progresses. Nonetheless, the rest of the Timberwolves are certainly going to be of aid to their teammate as he continues to go through these difficult times.