NBA Rumor: Kevin Garnett Retirement

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Three all-time greats retired last year: Tim Duncan, Kobe Bryant and Kevin Garnett. The Spurs already retired Duncan’s number. The Lakers will put both of Kobe’s numbers into the rafters next month. When will the Timberwolves follow suit with Garnett? Timberwolves owner Glen Taylor, via Derek Wetmore of 1500ESPN: “For our part, we have invited KG to do that numerous times,” Taylor said in a radio interview with 1500ESPN. “So I think it’s just waiting for KG to feel comfortable doing that. For whatever reason, he’s been a little bit silent on that issue. But I’m sure it’ll happen. We’re not pushing but we sure have told him that the door is open and we look forward to that time.”

For a brief moment in between his tenure with the Boston Celtics and the trade that sent him to the Brooklyn Nets, Kevin Garnett apparently considered retiring from the NBA, enrolling at college, living in a dorm and having Showtime document the whole thing. On a podcast with Minnesota Timberwolves guard Zach LaVine (around the 30-minute mark), The Vertical’s Chris Mannix told the story. “When it ended in Boston, he thought he was done,” Mannix said. “Like, he thought it was going to end there. Paul [Pierce] had to talk him into the trade to Brooklyn. He was on a plane to China with the head of Showtime Sports, and he went up to this guy — Stephen Espinoza is this guy’s name, he went up to Stephen and said, ‘I’ve got an idea for a show. How about I go to college?’ You know, K.G. comes out of high school, never went to college. He wanted to go to college, live in the dorm and let Showtime shoot it.” “He said he wanted to go to class,” Mannix added. “He said he wanted to do the whole thing. He said he wanted the whole nine.”

4 years ago via ESPN

“I would have absolutely been interested in bringing him here. You always find a place for a guy like that, whose voice in the locker room is so strong, so clear, so impactful. “He’s such a great teacher in practice. He should start a course in leadership. The NBA should designate who the best player is on each team and then they could bring Kevin in and he could teach them how to be the best player and the best leader. Better yet, they could bring him and Tim [Duncan] in and they could teach it together and show people how it can be done in two completely opposite ways.”

Would you be surprised to see him on television as an NBA analyst? Jimmy Jam: No, I wouldn’t be surprised to see him on TV. I would enjoy seeing him on TV. I don’t know if you’ve ever had a chance to sit with him to watch a basketball game, but it’s hilarious. It’s unbelievable. I wouldn’t be surprised if he did that. Ownership, he expressed an interest in that. But it’s too bad with Flip passing away. It was a great plan that Flip had. The initial plan was to bring him back, give him the ropes of ownership. I think he still is interested in that. He has never expressed one definitive thing that he wants to do. That’s why I said there is no rush to me. I’m sure he’s made plans and there are things he wants to do.

Jeff Zillgitt: NBPA executive director Michele Roberts’ statement on Kevin Garnett: “Kevin Garnett will go down as one of the greatest competitors in the history of our sport. His hard work and dedication to the game night in and night out made him one of the most complete players in the NBA. KG brought an unparalleled intensity to the court, that led him to an MVP award, Defensive Player of the Year award, and later a championship in Boston. He has left an indelible mark on the game that has and will continue to inspire a generation to follow in his footsteps.”
4 years ago via ESPN

Rivers, who once declared Garnett his favorite player to coach, said he has spoken with Garnett about Minnesota’s decision to orchestrate a buyout for the 15-time All-Star, who announced his farewell Friday. “He doesn’t want to play,” Rivers said. “I’m sure he won’t play again. I think he realized, ‘Why am I doing this?’ “I would have absolutely been interested in bringing him here. You always find a place for a guy like that, whose voice in the locker room is so strong, so clear, so impactful.

Karl Anthony Towns: Thank you for everything my brother. You know how much I’m gonna miss playing with you and just simply having you around. Congrats on having one of the greatest careers the game has ever seen. We talked. I know what I must do. I’ll take it from here.

Chris Paul: The first 3 times I ever played against you we both were called for double techs…I’ll never forget what you said to me my rookie year during the jump ball to start the game in OKC(I was an awe, but you changed that real quick lol)…I’ve never hated playing against someone so much but also wanted them to be my teammate as much as you! Hate that we never got that chance but I appreciate you more than you’ll ever know as a competitor and I wish you and the the fam the best in what’s next in store in life!!! #ThankYou #BigTicket

LeBron James: I mean where do I start. First watching you play at the Solon Cage Classic in Ohio with Team Michigan when u were in HS, I believe I was 10 years old and I was like dang this dude nice!! Then a lil time passed and u were drafted straight out of HS to the pros so I felt like man whoever get him is a lucky team. And I surely wasn’t wrong! The KID nickname was fly, swaged out and made a 10 year old kid from Akron believe he could run with the big boys himself! Fast forward 8 years later that kid you inspired entered the draft fresh out of HS as well. Thank you!! Competing vs you in whatever uniform u were in at the time meant the world to me because of two distinctive trait u had. Passion and commitment to just compete every single possession. U showed me what it took and we never played on the same team(All-Star games is different). Thank you! Congratulations to The Big Ticket on a helluva career! HOF is your next stop to cap it all off, the cherry on top!! 1 Love

Dwight Howard: KG. My favorite player ever. Thank you for inspiring me. Im going to miss all the scraps and fights we had on the court. But I will never forget the talk we had after you head butted me lol. But thank you for the memories. My two favorite KG moments of All-Time are when you caught the one handed rebound and dunked it back in and pointed to the sky. The other moment is watching you win the title and say “Anything Is Possible”. My favorite commercial is when u was running around the world putting everybody on your back. There will never be another Big Ticket. Again KG THANK YOU. RIGHT 💯💯

Everything changed when Celtics general manager Danny Ainge struck gold by acquiring Kevin Garnett, a 10-time All-Star and former league Most Valuable Player, from the Minnesota Timberwolves on July 31, 2007. Everything changed because Garnett wasn’t just an elite basketball player; he was also an elite leader, a man who shifted the culture of an entire organization in one fell swoop. “Very few players can affect an organization like Kevin did here in Boston, both on and off the court,” Ainge said Friday, the day of Garnett’s retirement from the NBA. “He led our team by example every day with his drive, his passion, and his relentless commitment to winning.”

“While always putting team ahead of individual,” Ainge said, “Kevin earned his place among the greatest players in Celtic and NBA history.” Garnett’s arrival in Boston changed everything for the Celtics. The lasting impact of his work ethic, his leadership and his team-first mentality still oozes from the walls of the team’s facility. He was the driving force behind the restoration of Celtic Pride, and that pride has not waned since his exit from the team during the summer of 2013.
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September 28, 2020 | 12:32 pm EDT Update
How many more years do you feel you can play? Dwight Howard: Physically, I could play until I’m 40. Past 40 if I wanted to. It’s just someone saying we’ll give you that opportunity. I know how to take care of my body. I know what’s needed and what’s not needed. I understand the game because I played in different eras and I can also teach it. I have a lot left in the tank. I’ll never quit on my teammates, I’ll never quit on myself or an organization. There’s been a lot of times where I’m like, ‘F— it, I’m sick of this s—. I’m sick of being lied on, I’m tired of people saying I’m like this and I’m not.’ I don’t work hard. I’m a bad teammate. All the things that I’m not … all the things I had to go through and stick to the plan.
Storyline: Dwight Howard Free Agency
Assuming Grant returns to the Nuggets one way or another, and with Porter and Bol on the rise, it makes the need for Millsap less dire. He filled the role of a decent scorer and defender, who played with a level of consistency needed on the less-experienced Nuggets team. But if Porter can step up into the small forward position, Millsap’s role is less necessary. The other factor is how much money they would have to pay him. However, if Millsap would take the vet minimum, there might be a better chance of him returning.
As a Los Angeles Lakers player, Lue won NBA titles in 2000 and 2001 while playing with Hall of Famers and Kobe Bryant and Shaquille O’Neal, who like Simmons and Embiid didn’t always get along. As a coach, Lue won the 2016 NBA title with the Cleveland Cavaliers. LeBron James, one of the best to play basketball, was the headliner of that squad. In addition to being the only candidate with a championship pedigree, he knows a thing or two about dealing with all-time greats.
Storyline: Embiid-Simmons Dynamic
Iguodala and James went head-to-head in four straight Finals, from 2015 to 2018, when they played for the Golden State Warriors and Cleveland Cavaliers, respectively. So, Iguodala, who was named the Finals MVP over James in 2015, is no stranger to the tall task ahead. “You just got to have that will, understanding you’re guarding the top talent ever,” Iguodala told The Undefeated. “He’s going to make you pay when you make mistakes. You just try to play mistake-free basketball. Put him in vulnerable situations where you feel like you got the advantage, whether it’s a shot or a pass or where he is defensively.”
Since the 2015 Finals, no defender has guarded James more than Iguodala, who has held James to 44% shooting on 139 field goal attempts, according to ESPN Stats & Information. In the 2020 Finals, Iguodala’s Heat will be the underdog against James’ Lakers. But the 36-year-old forward is confident about the Heat’s chances of winning it all. “We prepare better than anyone I’ve seen in terms of that grit, that grind and embracing,” Iguodala said. “We just have that chip on our shoulder of hearing, ‘You’re not the most talented.’ So, we take that and say, ‘How do we get the most of the guys on our team and make everyone a weapon on both ends of the floor.’ …
What do you mean ‘dumbed down the game’? Andre Iguodala: Well as you see in the bubble, there’s more fouls called than ever. They want high scores. I think more guys are put in a box. It’s catch and shoot 3s, or catch-and-drive real hard to the basket and dunk finish. The little nuances of the game, gamesmanship, it’s not as appreciated or it’s not as sought after or valued as much. I know a lot of guys in the league, like a Jrue Holiday (from New Orleans) or an Eric Gordon (from Houston), they have so much to their game, but the way the game is played now, they’ve taken that out of their games because they said, ‘All right, we want you to shoot 3s. We want you to defend, put your head down and drive.’ And those are two prime examples, where guys are like, ‘Man, this guy was a monster to deal with but the way the game has changed you’re limiting a lot of guys. That’s just the evolution of the game and where it’s going. I think it’ll come back eventually, but like I said, seeing those things I know my value because of my IQ or even at the next level, if I can get to a front office or head a team.
“What should I do to get better?” Howard recalls asking Bryant. Howard continued to The Athletic: “He was like: ‘What you mean? You’re already one of the best in the world. What do you mean? Continue to do what you’re doing, continue to play hard. Work on the elbow jump shot and bank shots.’ I was like, ‘Well, how many shots do you shoot in a day?’ He said he used to make 1,000 shots a day. That’s what I started doing: Shooting and making 1,000 jump shots a day. And the next year (2010-11), I was second in the MVP (race, behind Derrick Rose). “I’ll never forget that. The reason why he said do that wasn’t because he wanted me to shoot all jump shots — it was more so the will.”
Dwight Howard: For me, a championship is … I don’t see it as a trophy or ring, I see it as leveling up. I done played this game for so long and I keep getting to one part and I can’t beat it. It’s like playing Mortal Kombat and you get all the way to Goro, and you can’t beat him. And one day you finally beat him. It’s like: I finally did it. This is amazing. For me, it’s like getting past that last level. That championship level. Since I’ve been in the league, I’ve always said I’m a champion, and that’s a mindset.
Riley has made 17 Finals appearances as a player, coach and executive, accumulating eight of those shiny things in the process. The Heat had no money to sign Durant outright in 2016, but Riley still got a meeting with him in the Hamptons because of a reputation for being an elite, well-run operation. Playing with Wade in Chicago was a year-long Heat advertisement and made it a desired destination for Butler whenever he had the freedom and Miami had the money. “Obviously D-Wade told me about it. I wanted parts of that, the work; the culture, the word that everybody uses. I know y’all are tired of hearing it but it’s real,” Butler said.