Dear Kevin Garnett,
First and foremost, happy birthday, and thank you for teaching a new generation of fans what Boston Celtics basketball was about. Regardless of whether you return for the upcoming season, your legacy has forever been cemented in Celtics lore. You were the backbone for that 2008 title team, and have kept us competitive since your arrival.
I still remember that euphoric moment when your trade from the Timberwolves to the Celtics was finalized. It finally gave us true hope. Not blind hope that we might be able to compete, but that we now could compete. This commercial sums it up much better than I ever could.
Most of us know what has happened since that time. There have been many more joyful memories than sad, but all good things must eventually come to an end.
With the report surfacing that you will not be having surgery on your ankles, it leaves your future as a Boston Celtic in as much doubt as ever. It’s possible that maybe you really do not need surgery, but at points this year you claimed it was painful to even push the gas pedal while driving because of your ankles.
Is this your way of hinting to Celtics’ fans that it is over? If so, then I understand. It will be hard to move past it, but you’ve given so much to this franchise and the game of basketball.
The 15 All-Star game appearances, 25,274 points, and 2004 NBA MVP award says it all. You are a first ballot Hall-of-Famer, and Celtic nation has been lucky to have you.
I understand the mental grind you go through daily to prepare for games, and that doesn’t take into account the physical toll the game has taken on your body.
If you want to retire, you deserve to do so, and we all look forward to the day your jersey number is raised to the rafters.
BUT, if you do want to return for one more run, then I must ask of you one favor. Please force Danny Ainge to find you a competent center to play alongside with. It’s not fair to ask you to carry the burden in the paint on a nightly basis.
You still have a lot of gas left in the tank, evidenced by your 12.7 points per game and 13.7 rebounds per game in the postseason. Yet, the regular season is a long journey, and with all due respect, you need help.
Give Ainge an ultimatum, either find a center capable of providing starters minutes, or retire. I realize this is easier said than done considering the Celtics salary cap limitations, but it’s a necessity.
Adding a viable center doesn’t guarantee a championship in any form, but without one, this team stands no shot at raising banner 18.
You will likely play the deciding factor on whether this team rebuilds, or re-tools. So what will your choice be?
Celtic nation is waiting.