I think I can safely say that Al Jefferson was a big fan favorite to begin with. And now that he was the one that was most responsible for bringing us Kevin Garnett, he's likely to be even more appreciated. TWolves fans are still trying to cope with losing Garnett, and perhaps see Big Al as some kid that better live up to the promise. Still, they seem to be pretty optimistic as well.
Here are some quotes from a TWolves blog:
Al Jefferson was the key to the Kevin Garnett deal, and is what ultimately got the deal done. He has a lot of talent and potential, and is also on the verge of breaking out.
Last year, he ended the season with averages of 16 points per game and 11 rebounds per game. These numbers really aren’t that far off from what KG put up, but KG did it in a more dominant way. One upside to Jefferson, is that he is putting these numbers up at a young age — nine years younger than KG to be exact.
When we made the trade with the Boston Celtics, we all knew what kind of talent we were getting in return. But, with that trade, Minnesota got so much more than that. We got Al Jefferson and Ryan Gomes, two very good kids both on and off the court.
Ryan Gomes is much more known than Jefferson for being a good person off the court, and has been very active in the Boston community in the past, and also with charities.
But, Al Jefferson is good too, and he showed that this past week by bringing in all of the children that were on the bus when I-35W collapsed. Along with Wolves coach Randy Wittman, they brought the kids in for food and school supplies.
I also remember Al Jefferson giving a lot of time and probably money to the Mississippi communities devastated by Katrina. And you could just tell from interviews and the way people talked about him that he was a good hearted, likable guy.
I'll miss his double doubles. I'll miss his endless supply of low post moves. I'll miss watching him grow up before our very eyes. I wish him the best. Usually in trades you want the prospect to prove that he was never going to be much of anything anyway so it will justify the trade made. Not so here. I'm hoping he becomes everything he could possibly be. I'll always be a fan.