See more of the story

Thursday morning, hours before what promises to be an emotional pre-game tribute to former coach Flip Saunders, some of the Timberwolves players were trying to come to grips with what happened in South Florida, where a gunman killed 17 students and adults at a high school.

"It's heartbreaking,'' said Wolves guard Jamal Crawford, who has school-aged children of his own. "School is supposed to be. ... When I take my kids to school I feel like I'm in a different world. You feel like this is a safe community, a safety zone. For this to happen, it's heartbreaking.''

Karl-Anthony Towns (above) didn't claim to have all the answers, but knows something has to be done.

"It's not a race thing, it's a human thing,'' Towns said. "It's an American thing. We have to find ways to keep kids safe at school. Not just kids, everybody – you can't go with your friends to a nightclub in Orlando? You can't go out and watch a concert in Las Vegas? This is a very rough time to be an American. We have to make some changes.''

The question is, what changes?

"I know it sounds crazy, but I would erase guns, period,'' Crawford said. "I think the violence total would come down tremendously, obviously. So I would do that. But we have to look at these laws, what's going on. There's no way a kid should be able to get his hands on that type of weapon.''

Said Towns: "I'm an expert at playing basketball. I'm not an expert in politics or anything like that. I'm not a congressional man. All I did yesterday was say the leadership of this country needs to make steps forward to preventing stuff like this from happening.''