NBAUS Sports

Minnesota Timberwolves signee Greg Monroe turns into document 541st participant to play in NBA this season

Veteran middle Greg Monroe made historical past by turning into the NBA-record 541st participant used within the league this season when he checked in off the bench for the Minnesota Timberwolves of their 108-103 house win over the Boston Celtics on Monday evening.

Signed to a 10-day contract earlier within the day, Monroe had 11 factors and 9 rebounds in 25 minutes for the Wolves, who snapped a two-game shedding streak. His massive evening Monday marked his return to an NBA roster for the primary time since 2019.

The No. 1 decide of the Pistons within the 2010 draft performed with six NBA groups over the following 10 seasons. After stints in Germany and Russia, he signed with the G League’s Capital Metropolis Go-Go and performed 12 video games earlier than the Timberwolves got here calling.

His odyssey on Monday typified the lifetime of a basketball journeyman.

“I wakened at about 4 a.m. First flight was canceled,” Monroe stated. “I left D.C. about 7 a.m. roughly, needed to join in Chicago, obtained right here round 11, had COVID testing, obtained an opportunity to relaxation, got here to the health club round 4.”

After assembly with Timberwolves coach Chris Finch and shaking palms along with his new teammates, Monroe wasn’t positive what his position could be in opposition to the Celtics, however the 31-year-old stated he was ready for something.

“[Finch] did a superb job — regardless that I did not have any time with him, he put me in positions the place I used to be comfy,” Monroe stated. “I used to be simply doing issues I have been doing all season with the Go-Go, in order that type of made it straightforward for me.”

He was comfy sufficient that because the Wolves had been closing out the sport, they started working their offense by means of Monroe within the excessive submit.

“He is so skilled. He offers us a special look, some legit dimension and beef,” Finch stated. “His rebounding was nice. Once more, you’ll be able to simply throw it to him and issues type of relax.”

The entire expertise has left Monroe little time to course of what he has been by means of.

“It has been a whirlwind,” Monroe stated. “I used to be simply so centered on being prepared when my quantity was referred to as, I have not gotten an opportunity to digest it actually, however on this league, you do not have a lot time to digest something. We have one other sport tomorrow, and the Knicks are enjoying nicely. Proper now, that is what I am specializing in.”

Effectively, that and studying his teammates’ names.

“I am not gonna lie: Jaylen Nowell performed superior tonight. I did not know who he was,” Monroe admitted. “I feel he performed superior, however that was my first time seeing him. The sport is similar, the individuals change. Tonight, it is a younger man making the most of a chance.”

ESPN Stats & Data and The Related Press contributed to this report.

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