Kevin Garnett is currently out in China doing some work for his sneaker sponsor, ANTA. (We've all been there.) And, as has been reported by numerous outlets, Garnett said in a recent interview with the Chinese media that he intends to retire as a member of the Celtics.
I want to finish my career as a Celtic, said Garnett. This is it. I dont plan on bouncing from team-to-team, thats not really the plan. Hopefully God willing, I can finish my career out in the classy, elegant with a class-full organization as Boston. I dont want to downgrade. I want to continue to be where Im at. This is the first option and hopefully the only option.
Oops. Actually, wait. That's not from this week. That's from last September. So, here's my question: If he said that back then, then why did we spend a few months last spring speculating over whether Garnett would take more money to head to LA, Brooklyn or San Antonio?
It's easy. Because we have the collective memory of a goldfish.
So, here's my point: In the insanely unlikely chance that Garnett plays out these next three years and finds himself ready and able to sign yet another NBA contract, let's please remember what he said last September to the Globe, and what he said again this week in China: "I will retire as a Celtic, for sure."
He's not going anywhere else.
He never was.
Except for maybe China. But not until next off-season.
Rich can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow Rich on Twitter at http:twitter.comrich_levine
AUBURN HILLS, Mich. -- The Detroit Pistons will retire the jersey number of former UConn star Rip Hamilton tonight, an instrumental figure in the Pistons’ success in the early 2000s that included an NBA title in 2004.
Although Hamilton never played for Boston, his impact can be felt within the Celtics locker room.
Boston’s Amir Johnson spent his first four NBA seasons as a teammate of Hamilton's in Detroit.
In that time, Johnson acknowledges how many of the positive things folks associate with him come from lessons he learned from Hamilton.
“He was so relentless when he ran,” Johnson told CSNNE.com. “I remember working out with him one summer. For him to even get his shot off, he sprints full court, goes back down shooting shots, and he just kept doing this over and over and over again, full court sprinting . . . To see that as a young kid, and at his age, just working hard like that, it was great to see.”
James Young grew up in nearby Rochester Hills, Mich., so he watched Hamilton’s scoring prowess up close and personal.
And as he continued to evolve as a player, Young would see Hamilton during the summer months while attending Hamilton’s basketball camps.
“I was there every year, won MVP a few times,” Young told CSNNE.com. “He’s a great guy, a great player.”
And, like Hamilton, Young has a lanky frame for an NBA player, which was among the many reasons Young acknowledged Hamilton as being one of his first significant basketball influences as a youth.
“For sure,” Young said. “His mid-range game was crazy, great shooter. He was always consistent.”
And that consistency has paid off in the highest honor an NBA franchise can bestow upon a player.
“That’s big time,” Johnson said. “He’s a champion, great father, great baller. To have his jersey retired is an honor. To see the success he had in the league, and to see his jersey retired with the greats, it's definitely an honor. I’m glad I’ll be there to see that. Kudos to him. He’s a hard worker. Had a great career. I had my high school jersey retired, but to get your NBA jersey retired, that’s great.”
Hamilton played 14 seasons in the NBA, nine of which were with the Pistons. A career 17.1 points per game score, he averaged 18.4 with Detroit and was named an Eastern Conference All-Star three times (2006-2008).
Although he is known as one of the greatest mid-range shooters of his era, Hamilton began to expand his range over time. During the 2005-06 season, Hamilton shot 45.8 percent from 3-point range (most of them being corner 3’s), which led the NBA that season.
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