Pro Basketball

Hummel makes Minnesota Timberwolves roster

2013-10-27T17:00:00Z 2013-10-27T18:16:22Z Hummel makes Minnesota Timberwolves rosterJim Peters jim.peters@nwi.com, (219) 548-4363 nwitimes.com
October 27, 2013 5:00 pm  • 

Next up for Robbie Hummel, now that the Valparaiso High School and Purdue University graduate is officially a player in the National Basketball Association, is finding a place to live that doesn't have a checkout time.

"It's going to be nice not to have to live in a hotel," Hummel said. "All I did was eat out the first two weeks."

There will still be some hotel stays for Hummel, but those will only come when the Minnesota Timberwolves are on the road. Indications early in the week pointed toward Hummel making the team and he found out officially Saturday morning that he would be part of the roster.

"It's a good feeling to be employed for now," Hummel joked. "You want something for so long. I've wanted to play in the league since I was old enough to know what it was. In high school, I wasn't a one-and-done prospect, so I didn't have my eyes on the NBA at that point; but in college, my freshman year, I did pretty well, and it became apparent it was something I might be able to do."

That's before he tore the same anterior cruciate ligament not once but twice while at Purdue, impacting his draft value. Hummel was taken late in the second round of the 2012 draft by the T'Wolves, then spent the first year of his career playing in Spain before signing with Minnesota.

"The road I've taken here was a little different than I planned," he said. "I stayed with it. Basketball's something I enjoy doing so it's easier for me. If I didn't like doing it, I wouldn't play."

Hummel's first call when he got the news was to his parents Glenn and Linda. He described his mom as "ultra excited".

"That may not even do it justice," he said. "People have been great. Twitter. Facebook. Texts. It's so nice to have such great support, family and friends who care about me, who have been there from the start. It's helped me through all the adversity."

Ironically, a window may have opened for Hummel when the T'Wolves' Chase Budinger was sidelined indefinitely after his own knee surgery. Budinger is a 2-3 player (shooting guard-small forward), while the 6-foot-8, 215-pound Hummel is considered a 3-4 (small forward-power forward).

"Versatility's good to have, especially in the NBA," Hummel said. "The fact that I can play two positions only helps. There are so many talented guys, I have to be able to separate myself somehow. I shot really well during training camp, which is what I'm supposed to be able to do."

Making the team, Hummel stressed, isn't the end goal.

"It's just the beginning," he said. "I want to play here a lot of years."

His NBA career officially begins Wednesday, coincidentally against Orlando and former Purdue teammate E'Twaun Moore (E.C. Central).

"It's pretty crazy," said Hummel, who will wear No. 6. "It'll be fun to play against him. We grew up together. We still talk. We've texted a couple times (lately). He's helped me. He's been through it. He's had some good advice. He's somebody who's pretty special to me."

Hummel will be back in Indiana on Nov. 25 when Minnesota plays the Pacers. The T'Wolves are in Chicago on Jan. 27.

"If he hadn't hurt his knees like that, he might have been a lottery pick," Minnesota coach Rick Adelman said of Hummel in a recent Associated Press story. "I can see that. He's a very good, all-around player. He can definitely shoot the ball, but he's a very smart player. He's always in the right spot. He knows what he's doing and how to play the game at both ends."

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