On Thursday night, the Timberwolves organization honored the late Flip Saunders. As for how the franchise acknowledged their beloved coach and executive, that was accomplished in a plethora of ways.
— The Ringer (@ringer) February 16, 2018
The franchise worked closely with Flip’s family to ensure the evening had a focus on increasing awareness and raising funds for the “Flip Saunders Legacy Fund.” The fund, which was created within weeks of Flip’s passing, is “solely devoted to aiding and supporting deserving individuals or groups and continue the positive impact of the life of coach Flip Saunders.“
I’m sure the team and Saunders family drummed up a lot of cash for the Wolves’ former coach and Maroon and Gold Alum (also was assistant coach at the U from 1981-86). My personal favorite fundraiser was an easy choice. Like Michael Jordan and Spike Lee taught us, it’s gotta be the shoes:
— Target Center (@TargetCenterMN) February 15, 2018
In regards to my favorite aspect of the evening itself, I’d have to go with the banner. However, if I was at the game itself, my opinion might be different. Despite not being a big art person, the painting halftime show seemed electric. On top of that, the commemorative coins that everyone in attendance received are the classiest (just like Flip):
With the above toast to Saunders in their possession prior to tip, the Target Center crowd witnessed, among other things, the raising of the banner and some speeches from family and organization members.
But it was Flip’s wife, Debbie, that moistened everyone’s eyes: With her son Ryan (Wolves assistant coach) and others by her side, the widow of the basketball legend, addressed the crowd:
Debbie Saunders: “Flip was a good man, a good father and a good husband. I know Flip would want me to tell all of you that he was very touched by this moment and how fortunate he felt to have known you. Keep up your kindness, the Minnesota humble and kind.” #Twolves
— Mike Berardino (@MikeBerardino) February 16, 2018
— NBA (@NBA) February 16, 2018
Naturally, with most of the Flip-related events happening during pregame, the current Wolves roster was in attendance. In addition, many former Saunders-coached players were at Target Center for Flip Saunders Night. Despite many fans’ disappointment that KG wasn’t one of them, it was good to see Sam Cassell, Chauncy Billups, and others.
Among those others, was Latrell Sprewell. Nice! I assume he lives in a different state, and we all know he has a family to feed, so you know it’s important Latrell finds a way to make the trip back to MN.
Latrell Sprewell talking to Jimmy Butler is my childhood and adulthood happening all at once.
— Tim Faklis (@timfaklis) February 16, 2018