Former Timberwolves All-Star Kevin Garnett spent part of his Thursday evening in Ventura Village, meeting with business owners and customers of a recently opened Chase branch that’s geared toward helping that community.
His visit to the neighborhood within the Phillips community marked the first time Garnett has been to Minneapolis since George Floyd died on May 25, and the city had a different feel for Garnett.
“A bit eerie, if I’m being honest. Different,” the 2004 NBA MVP with the Wolves said Thursday. “When I landed I met with a bunch of my friends just to get a download of the city. Obviously, I’ve been following from afar, but I’m as invested in this community as anybody else and I care about it. Been here for a long time, I’ve had a home here. Been paying taxes a long time here in Minnesota. But I’m here for the doing and the action.”
That’s why Garnett wanted to meet with members of the community at Chase on Thursday to see how he can assist in the bank’s efforts in providing resources to underserved communities. Garnett also said he was partnering with Chase to bring literacy programs to the area. All this continues Garnett’s charitable work, which has gained more significance for him since Floyd’s death.
“I’ve been … trying to push for change in ways I see fit and expressing myself,” Garnett said. “Everybody should be able to go vote, have the chance to speak for themselves. I’m about trying to make some innovation and change that’s uplifting in any way I can, and this is the first part of that.”
Garnett said he was planning to visit Floyd’s memorial at 38th and Chicago for the first time on Friday.
Garnett recently made public his interest in buying the Wolves from longtime owner Glen Taylor. In July, Garnett posted on social media that he and a group he was affiliated with would like to buy the team after news leaked that Taylor was courting offers for the franchise.
But on Thursday, Garnett had no comment about where that stands.
“It’s good to be back in Minnesota,” Garnett said when asked about the potential sale. “Y’all know I can’t speak on certain things, but thank you guys for coming.”