Kevin Garnett is getting old now, but he’s still Kevin Garnett, which means he’s doing ridiculous things like this in preseason games:
Honestly, I couldn’t do a better impression of Garnett’s cartoonish trash-talking if I tried. Yes, this is stupid and probably unsportsmanlike, and it’s doubly and triply crazy because it happened in a preseason game and at the expense of yet another Raptor. Garnett once pulled the same clapping-an-inch-from-your-face-and-screaming thing at a startled Jose Calderon, and he got on all fours and barked like a dog at current Raptor Jerryd Bayless when Bayless was still in Portland.
The list goes on and on. I recounted a dozen or so of Garnett’s nuttiest incidents early last season, after Detroit’s Charlie Villanueva (a former Raptor!) claimed Garnett called him a “cancer patient” in a particularly nasty bit of trash talk. He even refused during a visit to Indianapolis in the summer of 2009 to meet with Pacers’ rookies Tyler Hansbrough and A.J. Price, telling a Pacers employee, “[Expletive] your rookies,” according to the Boston Globe.
I’ve had maybe two conversations with Garnett, so I don’t know him at all, and he certainly has no idea who I am. If you follow me on Twitter, you know Garnett’s face serves as my avatar, and that’s in part because he is one of my all-time favorite players, based simply on his on-court contributions. I have never seen a better defensively player in my lifetime, and I learned a lot about how team defense can work by watching Garnett. He plays with unusual intensity, and it seems clear now he has to go to some scary places — some borderline inhuman places — to fuel that intensity. Poor Andrea Bargnani is the latest victim, and he didn’t seem all that upset about it.
This is KG, once and forever.