TAMPA -- Growing up in Minnesota the son of a sportswriter, receiver Larry Fitzgerald was exposed to a variety of pro athletes in various sports. Shortly after the Arizona Cardinals arrived in Tampa on Monday for Super Bowl XLIII preparations, Fitzgerald reflected on two athletes with ties to the New England region.
"Kevin Garnett, I still keep in touch with Kevin. He's probably my favorite athlete of all-time," Fitzgerald said. "Just his work ethic, his passion, and desire to play. His leadership is unquestioned, unmatched.
"I remember a story, I was probably 15 or 16 and Kevin Garnett had just played a game [with the Timberwolves], scored 30 points, but they lost. After the game, he talked to me for an hour by his car. Things like that, you just never forget. You're a superstar, Hall of Fame player who just lost a basketball game and he takes the time out to talk to you, just a regular 16-year-old kid. That meant a lot to me and I'll never forget about that."
Fitzgerald served a ballboy with the Vikings, and reflected back on those times as well, specifically bonding with Randy Moss.
"I remember shooting H.O.R.S.E. with him sometimes between practice," Fitzgerald said. "If he wanted to play in the NBA, he probably could have done that if he put his mind to it. That's just the kind of athlete he is. I talk to Moss all the time now. He's a really good person and I'm really happy to see that he's had the amount of success he's had in New England."