Kevin Garnett has always been a warrior on the basketball court. No matter how you felt about him, you knew he was going to give his all once he hit the hardwood on defense. He wasn’t going to complain about injuries either.
Apparently, all of the minutes that Garnett has logged over his career–52,754 including the playoffs–have come back to haunt Garnett lately. He’s had an injury history with the Boston Celtics. He hasn’t completed 70 games in a Celtics uniform more than twice. When Garnett did play 71 games as a Celtic, they went to the Finals each year. He played 60 games in a truncated 66 game season last year and the Celtics went to the Eastern Conference Finals. When Garnett has been healthy, the Celtics have prospered.
He’s played in a respectable 68 games this season, but for a lot of those games his status was in question. Garnett has been fighting nagging injuries all season long. He limped into the playoffs this season with bone spurs that apparently float between his foot and his ankle.
Garnett is what makes the Celtics’ defense go–without him, they allow 104.8 points per 100 possessions. They may need to find a long term solution without Garnett soon. From the way things are going with his health, this will likely be Kevin Garnett’s last season.
Here’s what Doc Rivers had to say about Garnett’s healthy today:
“People have no idea what he goes through. You can’t, unfortunately. It really is – watching him, just in (the training room) now, doing all the stuff that they’re doing, and stretching – he just plays because he loves it, and it’s will,” said Rivers. “A lot of guys would just not play anymore. The fact that he does it, and to the level that he does it – he’s a rebounding machine right now for us, and we need it.”
If things are truly that bad with Garnett right now then it makes sense for us to believe all of the retirement talk that has been surrounding him. I can’t imagine him playing for another team at this point, and with his health being this concerning you wonder if he really wants to.
Garnett has been a warrior and has revived the Celtics glory that was lost in the era of Rick Pitino and Chris Wallace. With all that Garnett has given us, he has the right to retire if he wants to. No player should ever have to play until they break down. Its better for him to walk away from the game than to limp.