Garnett looks to become more of a scorer


Garnett looks to become more of a scorer

By A.Sherrod Blakely

OAKLAND, Calif. Kevin Garnett had a big night scoring in Boston's 115-93 win over the Golden State Warriors Tuesday night.

Memo to the rest of the NBA: Get used to it.

"Second half of this run towards the playoffs, I'm going to have to be aggressive," said Garnett, who had his 18th double-double of the season with game-high 24 points and 12 rebounds. "I'm a team player first . . . but I will be aggressive on this whole trip or this whole second half of the season to try and divert some of the responsibility off Paul Pierce and Ray Allen, and even Rajon Rondo. I have to be."

That ear-to-ear grin on coach Doc Rivers' face?

Yeah, he was happy with the win, which was Boston's first road victory over Golden State since 2003.

Even more pleasing was the fact that it came in part because of Garnett asserting himself offensively, something he has been reluctant to do at times.

"We told him before the game - early, often, and we are going to you every single time we can," Rivers said. "It's funny, our guys they were yelling at him, they kept telling him to shoot. You know Kevin; if he takes two in a row he will pass the next three times so they just kept saying keep going. And it was great to see him do that."

Garnett said his mindset towards being more of a scorer came about following the Celtics' 94-89 loss at Charlotte on Feb. 7.

In that game, Garnett had 9 points on 4-for-11 shooting, to go with 14 rebounds.

"I just thought I wasn't aggressive," he said. "I thought my play was beep, to be honest. I wasn't happy with my play, and ever since then I just marked it as, 'Let's pick it up. let's pick it up.' And I have."

In the four games since the Charlotte loss, Garnett has averaged 16.8 points, 10 rebounds and 4.3 assists per game.

When Garnett looks to score, it makes the Celtics a much more dangerous squad.

He has the ability to consistently knock down the 15-20 foot jumper. He can also scoring while taking defenders down into the paint.

On Tuesday, the Warriors (26-30) got a good dose of both styles of scoring from Garnett.

While the C's weren't necessarily making a conscious effort to get Garnett more touches offensively, Rajon Rondo did recognize a slightly different Kevin Garnett offensively.

"Tonight he was extra aggressive," Rondo said.

Even as he looks to score more, Garnett will still look to make an impact in other areas as well.

"I just try to be the glue on this team," Garnett said. "When you're playing with the talent we have on this team, I just try not to be one-dimensional. I try to be . . . everywhere. I try to fill every category in the book that's positive."

And yes, that includes being more of a scorer.

"My offense has to be . . . probably above average, and it will be," Garnett said.

A. Sherrod Blakely can be reached Sherrod on Twitter at http:twitter.comsherrodbcsn

Bertrand: Raptors a 'scary team' in the Eastern Conference

Bertrand: Raptors a 'scary team' in the Eastern Conference

Mike Felger and Marc Bertrand talk about the Celtics clinching the No. 1 spot in the Eastern Conference and other potential threats for the C's.

Monday, March 27: Hall call for Habs' Markov?

Monday, March 27: Hall call for Habs' Markov?

Here are all the links from around the hockey world, and what I’m reading, with crunch time coming in the NHL.

*Jack Todd says that the Hall of Fame needs to reserve a spot for Montreal defenseman Andrei Markov. Is he Hall of Fame material, or Hall of Very Good material?

*The playoff streak is coming to an end for Joe Louis Arena as the Detroit Red Wings finish out a lost season.

*Thanks to PHT writer James O’Brien for providing the kind of relaxing hockey moment that any dog lover could appreciate.

*Boston College standout Colin White has signed an amateur tryout deal with the Senators, but it remains to be seen if the entry level contract is coming.

*FOH (Friend of Haggs) Mitch Melnick offers his hot takes about the Canadiens after a 3-1 win over the Ottawa Senators.

*The US men’s hockey team may join the women’s team in boycotting the world championships if there isn’t a resolution soon.

*A group of longtime Leafs writers share some of their best stories from the press box

*In the shameless interest of self-promotion, here’s my hit with Toucher and Rich this morning talking about riding the hot hand with Anton Khudobin.

*FOH (Friend of Haggs) Tracey Myers wonders if a lopsided loss will snap the Blackhawks out of their malaise.

*Sidney Crosby fires back at Ottawa Senators owner Eugene Melnyk after he called the NHL star a whiner recently.

*For something completely different: getting to know new baseball analyst John Kruk, who we all should know pretty well at this point.