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June 24, 2010

Wesley Johnson


No. 4 Selection, Minnesota Timberwolves

Q. Feelings right now?
WESLEY JOHNSON: Feelings right now, a big sigh of relief. My heart is going like a thousand miles per hour, I know that, until I heard my name, I knew it was going to be like that until I heard my name and had a big sigh of relief. All of that hard work and dedication night after night paid off.

Q. I know you didn't get to play any games with Jonny Flynn but you practiced with him for the full year. Talk about how you are looking forward to working with him in Minnesota?
WESLEY JOHNSON: Definitely looking forward to playing with him, the chemistry you have starting out to play with each other, he's eager. Fortunate enough to be able to get drafted and play with him -- I'm excited.

Q. Did he text you?
WESLEY JOHNSON: I was on the phone, and he was yelling out teammates, and he's excited, too.

Q. Minnesota has had you pegged as their guy for the better part of six weeks, what was it about Minnesota and that connection that made them fall in love? Did you know they were that close to be willing to trade up to grab you?
WESLEY JOHNSON: I was hearing that for a while, when I went there they said I would fit right in with what they needed and everything, so I had a great work out and met the staff and everything, but they said my style of play was what they needed, especially the up-tempo pace I play is what they needed.

Q. At what point did you realize you were not going to be a first-round or lottery pick, but a top-five draft pick?
WESLEY JOHNSON: Probably in the middle of the year, I started hearing that and I started really getting confident that I had the ability to be a top-five pick. But really didn't set in until I heard my name.

Q. The Nets could have chosen you; did that cross your mind, the endorsements?
WESLEY JOHNSON: It did and my agent talked a lot about it, but my dream was to be in the NBA and fortunate to be picked my any team and it's a blessing, so thrilled to be going to Minnesota.

Q. Playing in Syracuse, you won't be intimidated by the cold weather?
WESLEY JOHNSON: I'll be fine, going back to Minnesota with the cold weather, I'll be all right.

Q. After the top two picks, anyone could have gone anywhere. How much do you read into projections?
WESLEY JOHNSON: Not at all, I let my agent follow that. I was listening a little bit and until I hear my name, then it's set in stone but it's hard not to listen to stuff like that, but I really just tried not to pay any attention to it and tried to enjoy the ride.

Q. Obviously you had to sit out that six overtime game at Syracuse, but first of all, how frustrating was it for you to do that and then you came back here, your first opportunity against North Carolina and really made a name for yourself.
WESLEY JOHNSON: Especially watching that game, not to be there for the team was hurtful and to see them compete as hard as they did, I loved that -- but when I got an opportunity to play and come back to the Garden, especially after missing last year.

Q. Can you give us an idea of something special that you guys, you and Johnny might be doing in practice together?
WESLEY JOHNSON: Oh, man, that year I sat out, the chemistry is crazy, his ability to pass the ball, so it's going to be a lot, a lot of highlights, the way he plays, so it's going to be a lot of highlights.

Q. Minnesota returns to Syracuse before the season starts to play an exhibition game. How much are you looking forward to playing with Jonny there?
WESLEY JOHNSON: Excited. When I heard that when I was leaving, he told me that we were going to go back -- it's going to be fun. I've always said I wanted to give back to my community and teammates, but to go back to Syracuse with Jonny, it's exciting.

Q. You've talked about what a tough decision it was going to be for you; is there any emotion about going back to Syracuse and thinking about what if you had stayed?
WESLEY JOHNSON: Without a doubt, it was a tough decision for me to make, but I love Syracuse, but it was my dream to go to the NBA, especially now that I'm in the NBA going back. It's going to be fun.

Q. Playing with Jonny, you're going to be playing with Kevin Love, as well. Talk about how that will open up your game, playing with a guy that can grab boards.
WESLEY JOHNSON: Really with the knowledge of the game, we are going to blossom together, the skill set, our games are really blossoming and I think that's going to be a key for us is growing with each other.

End of FastScripts

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