Kevin Garnett sent Boston into the All Star break with a bang last night when the future Hall of Famer sort of . . . maybe . . . wait a second, for real? . . . hinted that this will be his last season in the NBA.
This is definitely my last All-Star Game, KG said. Y'all don't know what I know. I'm more than grateful, and I'm not going to act like I have more All-Star Games in me.
Of course, this is Kevin Garnett we're talking about, so no one can be entirely sure of what he's getting at. But the question is: What else could he be talking about other than retirement? What could he know that we don't besides "I plan on hanging them up after this season"?
Well, I've given it some thought, and it narrowed it down to only possibility. Or, I should say, one other possibility besides this lame joke I made after last night's game.
What KG knows that we don't: David Stern plans to nuke the entire league hours before his Feb. 1 resignation. Rich Levine (@rich_levine) February 14, 2013
That is . . .
KG's just not comfortable with being an All Star any more.
He's appreciative. He takes nothing for granted. But he looks around at the rest of the All Star team, most specifically the other starters on the East LeBron, Wade, Carmelo and probably Kyrie Irving and knows that he doesn't belong anymore. That he's had his run, and it's time for the other guys to shine.
Maybe what he knows is that the All Star game isn't the same for him anymore. That none of his friends are there. I mean, you look at both rosters and Kobe and Duncan are the only players left from Garnett's era. He has no relationship with Duncan. Kobe is Kobe. So what's left? Taking the floor and maybe getting dunked on by Blake Griffin or spun in a circle by Chris Paul? To watch the four other Eastern starters sprint up and down the court, throwing down on everyone's head, while he's trying to keep track of his 5-5-5 minute plan?
Maybe this was KG's subtle way of telling the fans: "Listen, I don't know what the future holds quite yet, but either way, stop voting for me. What I know that you don't is that I shouldn't be an All Star starter anymore. I don't need to be an All Star starter. Hell, I've played in the second most All Star game in NBA history! It's OK! It's enough. I'd rather spend the weekend jogging on the beach in Mailbu or playing in the sand with Boo-Boo."
Or I don't know, maybe he just informally announced his retirement. Only time will tell.
In the meantime, I guess it's probably stupid to assume anything different. It would be short-sighted and careless to watch the rest of this season without taking a second (or a hundred thousand seconds) to soak in the sights, sounds and wonders of Kevin Garnett.
And while we're at it, let's not forget that Paul Pierce has made it clear in recent years that he only want to play as long as Garnett does. That if KG walks, Pierce probably walks too. In which case . . .
Nah, let's not go there yet. Let's just do as KG says, and "enjoy this one with friends and family." Also, let's just enjoy every moment he's out there on the All Star court. You know he will. And you don't know if you'll ever see it again.