By Mike Max

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — Tyus Jones is part of the basketball pride of Minnesota.

We have seen him grow up before of our eyes, from Apple Valley to the Final Four MVP award in leading Duke to a national title.

“That’s what you put so much time in, you know, put so much effort in is to get to that moment,” Jones said.

He has also become a bit of coach. His brother Tre came up one game short in a chance at his own Final Four. But Jones is there for him, a constant guidance.

“Just continue to do what he’s been doing to get, you know, that helped him get to this point. Continue to be a winner, continue to be a leader,” he said.

(credit: CBS)

Jones is now a member of the Minnesota Timberwolves, of course, but the one constant for he and his two brothers is their hero — their mother Deb. She was recently diagnosed with breast cancer.

“It’s been a crazy experience, you know, honestly,” Jones said. “Our family is extremely close already, but it’s just been something that we’ve handled as a family.”

Basketball is a break for Jones. His mother is never far from his thoughts.

“She’s been great with it and very positive, upbeat. She’s in great spirits,” Jones said. “Honestly, that helps everyone else around her.”

His family’s focus has moved a bit from basketball to Mom.

“She’s amazing,” Jones said.

Jones’s jersey will be auctioned off as part of the cause to raise awareness Sunday afternoon following the Wolves game.

Mike Max