Post-game Reactions

Someone from The Hoops Forum sent me a direct message on Twitter today urging me to read this story arguing that Kevin Garnett is overrated. So then I read it. Then I decided to do this, homage-style. (RIP, FJM). Excerpts from the story in italics. 

For sometime now mainstream sports media (haha I sound like Fox News) has had a love affair with Kevin Garnett and frankly I am not sure why. Granted Kevin Garnett is a terrific basketball player. Garnett gives 100% every time he steps on the floor and his defensive abilities helped lead the Celtics to banner No. 17 but in my opinion Garnett is not who everyone thinks he is.

Or, to paraphrase: I am about to make an argument that Kevin Garnett is overrated. Let me start by calling him “terrific,” saying he gives 100 percent “every time he steps on the floor” and crediting his huge role in helping the C’s win the 2008 title. And we’re off!

This inexplicable love for Garnett runs very deep, all the way back to Garnett’s high school days. Garnett was a McDonald’s All-American and there was a lot of hype surrounding Garnett because he was contemplating skipping college and heading straight to the NBA. Garnett’s decision of whether to attend college or was not based on him feeling that he was a superior talent and that college couldn’t pose a challenge, nor was it because his family was in dire need of money, Garnett was sure to cash in on upon turning pro, no Garnett’s decision was based on his inability to score the minimum score on the SAT that would qualify him to attend a division 1 school.

Hey, the SATs! I did well on those! Let’s try an analogy now!

                                     This fact about Garnett’s SAT score : Relevant to your thesis ::

                                                   A)  Sun : Warmth

                                                   B) Poop: Smelly

                                                   C) The Knicks: Good at Baskeball

                                                   D) C.C. Sabathia: Fat

Oh, there’s more.

The 1996 McDonalds All American game was another inexplicable event for me growing up; the announcers were gushing over Garnett abilities. The McDonald’s All-American game is an all-star game where 99 out of 100 times the leading scorer wins the MVP despite 28 from both Paul Pierce and Ron Mercer; Garnett with 21 points won the MVP.

Three paragraphs in and we’re discussing the McDonald’s game? And not, say, the Western Conference playoffs? What about KG’s early failures in Pop-a-Shot contests at Chuck E. Cheese?

Garnett’s professional basketball career has been very impressive, he has had more 20-10-5 seasons then Larry Bird and he has been a notable player

What a bum! Um, what? 

but Garnett is given too much credit

Whew. We’re back on track.

He shouts, screams and yells for three quarters only to disappear in the fourth quarter. He is often in the middle of a fracas that he started with his lame attempts to intimidate his opponents but yet he is often praised as a leader when in my opinion he is nothing more then a jerk and not a Steve Martin jerk more like a Cartman from south park jerk.

I like what you did contrasting the movie “The Jerk” with Cartman from South Park. I sorta like Cartman, but he’s definitely a jerk. Remember that Scott Tenorman episode

Anyway, here is a completely random list of Kevin Garnett fourth-quarter lines from close games during the 2008 post-season:

Game 6, @ Atlanta: 2-3, 4 points, 2 turnovers

Game 5, vs Cleveland: 3-5, 10 points, 8 rebounds

Game 7, vs Cleveland: 2-4, 4 points, 2 rebounds

Game 1, vs Detroit: 2-2, 4 points, 4 rebounds, 2 assists, 2 turnovers

Game 6, @ Detroit: 2-5, 10 points, including two FTs with 3 seconds left and the C’s up two

Game 1, vs LA: 1-6, 4 points, 3 rebounds

Oh, and he also played one of the all-time great Game 7s in 2004 against the Kings. 

But, anyway. If you want more, you can go read this.

You don’t have to play in the NBA to know the Kevin Garnett type. Garnett is the guy in the rec league threatening people with violence, the guy talking trash after his team won the game despite his teammate making the winning shot, he is the jerk yelling and screaming for making a lay-up that he should have made. He is a grand stander a front runner. Below is a you tube clip of a calculated cowardly move by Garnett. Striking Tim Duncan knowing Duncan wouldn’t retaliate.

He also steals candy from babies. And talks trash to them while he’s doing it. I heard he pees in the shower. Gross, that is. 

My anger and frustration reached an all time high a few weeks ago when Kelly Dwyer of Ball Don’t Lie put together a list of the best players of the decade and ranked Garnett second best player of the decade behind Tim Duncan and ahead of Kobe Bryant, Shaquille O’Neal, Lebron James, etc. I was shocked, Garnett has one championship and Shaq and Kobe each have four rings.

Oh, now I get it! The “he’s got one ring” argument. This is a pretty easy one to make. There’s no way you can lose the internal logic in the span of two sentences, right? 

Not only that but prior to arriving in Boston, Garnett missed three consecutive playoffs. Larry Bird, Magic Johnson, Isiah Thomas, Karl Malone, Michael Jordan, Charles Barkley the real greats never ever missed three consecutive playoffs.

Oh. Oh no. No, no, no. You mention KG’s single, solitary championship ring as a criticism and then roll right into contrasting him with a group of players—the “real greats”—that includes Charles Barkley and Karl Malone. 

Also, just for fun, here is the roster of the 2000 Minnesota T’Wolves, a team that went 50-32 and earned the 6th seed before losing to the 3rd-seeded Blazers in the first round: 

Garnett, William Avery, Terrell Brandon, Dean Garrett, Tom Hammonds, Bobby Jackson, Sam Mitchell, Rasho Nesterovic, Andrae Patterson (?), Anthony Peeler, Malik Sealy, Joe Smith, Wall Szczerbiak. 

Let’s just move on. Because there’s more!

As a matter of fact Garnett has only been past the first round three times in his career and I am being generous, I am including last year where he didn’t even play a single game of the playoffs. There were other significant problems with Kelly Dwyer’s list but Garnett being ranked second was the biggest in my opinion.

Is this post an act of revenge against Kelly Dwyer or Kevin Garnett? I bet Kelly Dwyer smells bad. 

Its like the mainstream media doesn’t want to admit that Garnett wasn’t all he was made out to be. Even as I did research for this blog there were a number of other blogs comparing Tim Duncan and Kevin Garnett.


What is there to compare? Duncan has four championships and three finals MVP’s to Garnett’s one championship and no finals MVP, case closed.

Case freaking closed. And locked. With one of those Samonsite number combination locks built right into the briefcase—the kind Mel Brooks used to hide some secret thing in Spaceballs. What was the combination again? 

Just for fun, the following players have won the NBA Finals MVP: JoJo White, Cedric Maxwell, Wes Unseld, Willis Reed, Chauncey Billups and Joe Dumars. Know what they all have in common: They are all better than Kevin Garnett. For serious.

Also, the following players have zero NBA Finals MVPs: Charles Barkley, Karl Malone.

Garnett’s antics, the chest pounding, the cursing, the yelling, constant delivering of cheap shots draws attention to himself. Garnett’s contribution to the Celtics championships can’t be denied he anchored the Celtics defense but Paul Pierce made the shots and wanted the ball in the pressure situations. Paul Pierce is the one who denied Lebron James an eastern conference finals appearance matching Lebron shot for shot but the last memory of the 2008 Finals is again Kevin Garnett screaming “anything is possible”.

Paul Pierce is awesome, ergo Kevin Garnett sucks. Is that the transitive property? 

With all that said the Boston Celtics will need every bit of Kevin Garnett’s shenanigans to hoist Banner No. 18. The chest pounding, the cursing, undoubtedly gets the crowd and his teammates going and provides an additional challenge for the opposing team.

Wait, did you take a nap toward the end of this essay? And when you were taking a nap, did one of your friends think it would be a fun prank to type the end of the essay, only to make the exact opposite point you were trying to make in the first 800 or so words? 

 If Garnett were not injured last season Rashard Lewis would have been rendered useless in the playoffs and the Celtics surely would have made a return trip to the Finals. Garnett is a guy you hate when he is on the opposing team but love him when he is on your side.

Man, your friend really got you good! Because you spent like 800 words and who knows how many hours bashing KG, and then you took a nap and your friend tacked on an ending in which you argue KG would have shut down Rashard Lewis and guaranteed the C’s a return trip to the Finals. What a bad friend.

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Zach Lowe

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  • Adam

    HATE HATE HATE! It is what it is, KG will continue to dominate. I just hope he reads this article… maybe he will add a few more colorful words to his pregame banter and take the C’s to #18.

  • Hahahahaha. That must have been fun to write.

    …although it is a bit like Yao vs. Nocioni. You know what Clyde Drexler would say about the ease of dismantling this ridiculous essay-thing: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JJ1MTsLHjTk

  • Jason

    This KG crap is getting so old isn’t. Ignorant people/writers just plain make my soul hurt and I’m not joking. I feel sorry for society that such stupid people are actually out there and in positions of influence no less.

    That’s what this country does. Roots for the underdog till he’s not the underdog anymore then has to tear him down. It’s sickening.

  • Dude, it’s thehoopsforum.com. Any attention for them is good attention. And yes, anyone basing their argument on their research that KG hasn’t won all that many championships or had all that much playoff success and acting like they’ve found some grand secret is just kind of pathetic. If you want to subvert the conventional wisdom, it’s generally a good idea to come with more information instead of less.

    And I hate KG’s in-game antics as much as anybody, but to base an essay about his game around them is ugh. Now, a post about how possibly the most intriguing combination of size, speed, and skills to ever play in the frontcourt has seen his offensive bread-and-butter become catch-and-shoot 18-footers, that I’d read. But seriously, this didn’t deserve a response. I look forward to your takedown of an article like this that actually does.

  • Jonathan

    Zach, I am surprised you even wasted your time to analyze this drivel (must be for entertainment value only). This guy knows about as much about basketball as brain surgery. He doesn’t like KG and has no reason to (or is trying to stir something up). Actually, I can’t tell wether he likes KG or not since the drivel is so scatterbrained. Can you imagine the look on his boss’ face when he submits this community college 2nd year essay for publishing? BTW which Minnesota small town rag is this anyway?

  • KG is not over rated. The problem is that he is aging, especially big men, as they get older, they loose a step and are more injury prone

  • @all: I know this didn’t merit a response of any kind. But: a) I was cranky; b) I wanted to write something that wasn’t too labor-intensive, since Office/30Rock were on and all; and c) The original post actually got a positive comment or two—I think there is a segment of fans that actually believes this stuff.

  • chris

    I think it was less about KG being a bad player and more about him being kind of an ass…

  • Jason

    He doesn’t take plays off and he’s shown up a guy or two in his career. That makes him an ass? I think it just makes him like most every other NBA player, except most other players take plays off.

  • AnthonyJ

    In response to the guy who thinks KG is over-rated, the fact that you’re an idiot is way under-rated.

  • Nice post Zach don’t forget to checkout http://www.thehoopsforum.com on Monday

  • rondo-is-love

    If he's upset that KG got listed ahead of Kobe on somebody's list, he clearly doesn't know Kobe like he thinks he does. Sure, KG does the shit talking, chest pounding.. but does Kobe not do it? He's right – KG is the guy you hate when he's on the opposing side, but absolutely love when he's on your own side. That, however, does not determine whether or not he deserves to be on a list.

    What is he so upset about anyway? That Kelly Dwyer list was based on opinion. If you truly think about it, everything in sports is based on opinion.

  • Still enjoying #17

    Pure Haterade

  • BoBo

    This could be the most ridiculous thing I have ever read in my life. This guy’s a typical “basketball” fan who knows nothing about the game. Just because you don’t score 40 and 50 points 3 or 4 times a year don’t mean your not a good basketball player! KG is the Best Defender ever! KG is a coach’s dream, A leader who is unselfish and will do anything to win. But no I guess you have to go out Rape a couple bitches, demand trades, and not give a shit about your teammates to get on this guys radar. Dear whoever wrote this crap. Your a douche bag now go get back on kobe’s nuts. BITCH.

  • Henry Huff


    This guy's a moron. He also can't write himself out of a paper bag. How many run on sentences in my opinion can you write in my opinion showing that Kevin Garnett in my opinion wasn't even that good, did he make the playoffs every year,no, but in my opinion, that's not even his worst feature, which is his yelling and not scoring in the 4th quarter, in my opinion?

  • dmcgarve

    Zach, you're my hero for writing a lengthy blog completely bashing some idiot's 4th grade essay. It shows true loyalty, something that all of us C's fans can appreciate. Keep being Awesome!

  • @dmcgarve: I detect sarcasm. Sorry if this offended people. As I said, I was cranky. I sort of regret it now, but it’s out there, so we move on.

  • jeff

    just happened upon this…..watched garnett entire career….very immature….even with mchale to show him you increase effectiveness inside by going TOWARD the hoop, garnett wanted to be a flashy fallaway jump shooter….stubborn…..very unfulfilled talent…..not even top five on CELTICS team any more…
    kinda pathetic lack of fullfillment…

    not even a factor

    read your smartass responses to this story and realized even more how valid his points were..

    i believe your in love with kg

    all seem afraid to criticize

    da kid for maturity
    da old man for condition now
    da coward for his faux thugsterism

    celts make history this year
    lose series 4-3

    btw…former boston resident during bird years…love the celtics…

    pierce, allen,,,awesome..

    but kg.,,, makes it the big two and a quarter


  • Hi, I’ve been researching this topic for awhile and I must say the information is great. Thanks!