When the Minnesota Timberwolves departed for Oklahoma City last week after their win against the Atlanta Hawks at home, they had a new face on the plane with them. Cody Metz, 16, was that new face on board.
Five years ago, Cody had a brain tumor in his spinal column near the base of his brain that required surgery. While he was in the hospital he spent his time watching the Timberwolves and examining their every move. It was what kept him going everyday. One of his doctors stopped by each morning and chatted with him for about 15 minutes about what the Wolves did the night before. They would discuss coaching decisions, key moments in the game and praise the top players. While his friends were off playing he was stuck in a wheelchair, so he turned to the Minnesota Timberwolves and the NBA for inspiration to learn to walk again and gradually learn to run again.
Now, the Timberwolves were reaching out to Cody through the Make-A-Wish Foundation to help make one of their biggest fans’ wishes come true. His wish was to travel to an away game with his favourite team, the Minnesota Timberwolves, and that’s exactly what they did for him.
Cody received a personal invitation via video message from his favourite player, Kevin Love, to attend a home game against the Hawks on January 8 and to travel with the team later that night to their away game against the Oklahoma City Thunder, which was the very next day. He got to sit courtside for the warm-ups, visited with players, and then joined his family and 15 of his closest friends in a suite to watch the Wolves host the Hawks.
During the game, the injured Kevin Love personally delivered a gift bag to Cody that was full of Wolves gear and the two spent time together watching the game. After the game, Cody and his family headed to the airport for the team flight to Oklahoma City.
While in Oklahoma City, Cody got to have breakfast with the team at the hotel, sat courtside for the shootaround, behind the Timberwolves’ bench during the game, and even got to meet Kevin Durant and some of the Thunder players and the Thunder Dancers throughout the night.
As someone who has been a lifelong supporter of the Minnesota Timberwolves, they sure did make him feel like he was a member of the team. When they were checking in to their hotel in Oklahoma City, Wolves guard Ricky Rubio approached Cody to ask him how his experience on the flight was and if everything was all right.
This is definitely something that Cody, his family, the Minnesota Timberwolves, and the Make-A-Wish Foundation will remember for a long time. The NBA and other leagues around the world are continuing to show everyone that they appreciate the people that support them on a daily basis and give them the opportunity to play by putting forth efforts like this within the community and giving back to those in need. The Wolves did not only show Cody that they appreciate his support, but that they have his back and he’s a member of the team.
To learn more about the Make-A-Wish Foundation, visit http://www.wish.org/
To learn more about the Minnesota Timberwolves FastBreak Foundation, visit http://www.nba.com/timberwolves/community/fastbreak_foundation.html