The soon-to-be number-one overall draft pick lives in a house much like any other in Piscataway, New Jersey—the only indicator that something’s different is a couple of University of Kentucky signs on the lawn and matching license plate frames on the Mercedes SUV in the driveway. This will change soon of course, but for now, Karl-Anthony Towns still lives in the house he grew up in. Which makes sense, seeing that a year ago he was in high school.
There have been some changes already, like the brand-new four-door Maserati parked outside. Inside though, it looks exactly as one would expect a home of a premier college athlete would: huge sneakers by the door, a rack of basketball video games, a couple of Gatorade Player of the Year trophies, a signed Kentucky Sports Illustrated cover blowup. You know, the usual. Excess, new Italian ride excepted, just isn’t Towns’ character. Last year he wore exactly two pairs of sneakers on court—one for practices, one for games—despite Nike’s largesse with the Kentucky program. He plans on investing his first NBA paycheck.
Towns may not turn 20 until November, but his year in Lexington more than prepared him for the media onslaught that comes with the buildup for the NBA Draft. He’s completely comfortable in front of the cameras, although perhaps not as comfortable as the family Havanese, Bobby, who—in mid-interview—jumps into my lap and promptly dozes off. In addition to a more a traditional interview (which can be seen on Facebook here), we decided to throw a bunch of either/or questions at him regarding his potential destinations. We didn’t reveal the concept to him beforehand, but he caught on quick. Yeah, he’s ready for the next level.