Champlin Park senior puts 'Naz Reid' in commencement speech

Naz Reid (11) of the Minnesota Timberwolves reacts after making a three pointer in the fourth quarter on Saturday, April 20, 2024, at Target Center in Minneapolis, Minn. NBA playoffs, first round, Minnesota Timberwolves vs. Phoenix Suns, Game 1, Targ (Carlos Gonzalez/Star Tribune / Getty Images)

Naz Reid made his impact all over Minnesota after signing a three-year, $42 million contract extension to stay with the Timberwolves before the 2023-24 season.

Now he’s even a part of graduation ceremonies. Champlin Park High School recently held its commencement ceremony, and graduating senior gave the "Student Reflection" for the 2024 class. He ended it with, "Understanding more completely the meaning of our lives, thank you."

Gavin Kelliher then said, "Naz Reid" before walking off the stage.

That’s the latest example of a season full of love shown for Reid in his fifth season with the Timberwolves. Every time the NBA’s Sixth Man of the Year checked into a game, the Target Center crowd erupted. On a towel night giveaway, the lower bowl was filled with blue "Naz Reid" towels. When the Timberwolves started their run in the Western Conference Playoffs, a Twin Cities tattoo artist offered Naz Reid tattoos for $20.

Some Twin Cities homeowners even put "Naz Reid" signs in the form of tape on their siding.

"That’s something that you dream about. For one just to be in the NBA, and to have that type of love, especially from the team that you were brought in by, it’s super huge. I’m excited to go into next year. Just to show everybody how hard I worked and how hard I’m trying to bring something special to Minnesota again," Reid said after the Timberwolves were eliminated from the playoffs. "People got tattoos and the beach towels, how hard I worked to get sixth man, it goes to all the fans, they brought it. It was huge. I check into the game and everybody is going crazy, that’s super loved. I appreciate every last person."

Reid’s story is one anyone can latch onto. He signed with the Timberwolves in 2019 after not being picked in the NBA Draft. The former LSU standout did enough in training camp to earn a rookie contract. Rather than enter free agency last offseason, he took a pay cut to stay in Minnesota. Reid is an easy guy to root for, something even high school seniors notice.