CLEVELAND There's plenty of blame pie to go around the Boston Celtics locker room if you're trying to figure out who to pin this latest defeat on.
For some players, there's a legit question as to how bad they really want to win or conversely, avoid losing.
And then there's Kevin Garnett who is so desperate now in his search to help the team win, he is starting to make the kind of mistakes that you seldom see him make.
In Boston's 95-90 loss, there was a sequence that was such an anti-Garnett moment.
There was a sequence on Tuesday in which Cleveland's Tristan Thompson just blew past Garnett for a dunk, and moments later he let a pass from Rajon Rondo just sail in front of him, out of bounds.
Garnett, who at his best just plays the game, appeared at times to be too deep in thought, seemingly trying to figure what he could do to help a teammate instead of just playing the game.
During the C's rougher-than-expected season, Garnett has challenged both himself and his teammates to look within themselves first and foremost in trying to figure out how to get this team on track.
For Garnett, those soul-searching moments have yet to reveal the solution that he's so desperately seeking to discover.
"I don't know man; I don't know man. I want it so bad," Garnett said. "I have to find a balance. Some of the things I messed up on tonight, that's not me.
Garnett added, "I have to be better. I have to do better. I have to be more effective for 48 minutes, regardless."
He finished with 16 points on 5-for-13 shooting, along with five rebounds, three assists, a steal and a season-high five blocked shots.
It was a game in which Garnett delivered yet another good, but not great performance.
And as he sat inside the Celtics locker room, pulling his hoodie back for a minute or so, it was clear that the frustration of what has been a season of struggles, was getting to him.
Not because of the losing; but because up to this point, there was very little that he could do to prevent it from happening.
And there lies the challenge, within the challenge. Garnett has to figure out what he can do to help the C's be more successful, but not allow that search-and-discovery mission take him down a path in which he makes more miscues for trying too hard to make everything better.
"You can find yourself wanting this a lot to the point where you mess up and make mistakes," Garnett said. "It's a human game. You gonna make mistakes. I just have to be better, period. No excuses. No (bleep). I have to be better, period."