Did You Hear KG is Overrated?
Posted by Zach Lowe on Oct 22, 2009
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.