Monday, August 11, 2008

So Much for Celtic Pride

When this year's NBA finals were set, I was one of the select few that were upset not to see a Pistons – Spurs finals. The main reason I was rooting for the Pistons and Spurs was basically because that was exactly the last thing David Stern wanted to happen. Not to mention, every year it seems most fans continue to hate on the Spurs and almost everyone outside of the ‘D’ always forget to mention the Pistons when talking about the leagues elite because of the lack of star power.

With the beloved Raps out of the playoffs long ago, I was left with having to choose to cheer for the Celtics or Lakers. The way that Chris Wallace basically handed Pau Gasol over to the Lakers like it was Christmas Eve in a soup kitchen hit me the wrong way. That along with Ray Allen, KG and Pierce all going for the first ring made me want the Celtics to win.

That is until it actually happened.
As the seconds fell off the clock in the fourth quarter and Boston was on the way to the largest margin of victory in a NBA championship deciding game, the bar started erupting in excitement with many Celtics fans clapping and chanting, “Na na na na hey hey hey…goodbye.” This led to many of the Lakers fans in fact, saying goodbye.

The clock reads zero, the ball is in the air, people are rushing onto the floor and then it happens. Kevin Garnett runs off the bench and drops at centre court to kiss the Celtics symbol as if he had been with the franchise since his first NBA game and been through the rough times, lived and breathed Celtic pride, as if he had never played for another franchise. But none of that is true. This was his first season in Boston. He was not standing next to Doc and P-squared last year through the death of the great Red Auerbach and the dismal 24-58 record.

Watching that made me think that I had seen something similar back in the day … say maybe around 1996. Wait. That was Michael Jordan after his first championship since the murder of his father.

Hey Kevin, you are no way near half of the basketball player Michael Jordan was and you never will be. Please never try and be Michael again, we already have Kobe trying to be like Mike.

The Big Ticket is then being interviewed by Michele Tafoya and decides that it’s necessary to not answer her question but scream at the top of his lungs with tears in his eyes that are hidden by his hat that looks to be 10 sizes too big, “Anything’s possiblllllllle” numerous times.

Then came the real shocker.

Bill Russell makes his way over to KG through the horde of people to congratulate Garnett on something Russell did 11 times (in 13 years). What does Garnett do? No, he doesn’t realize he is among a (in the best impression of WWE’s JBL) basketball god and thank Russell for everything he has done in his life but he hugs Russell and tells him, “I got one of my own now; I got one of my own baby.” Instead of gloating to one of the all-time greats, Garnett should have been humble enough to speak to Russell as the god his is.

Dare I say it again, hey Kevin, you are no way near half of the basketball player Bill Russell was and you never will be.

Then came the trophy ceremony when the trophy was being passed by the team, KG grabbed it with his two hands and held it high as he looked into the rafters hoarding it from the rest of his teammates instead of sharing in the glory.

In my mind, all of these things piled together in a matter of 15 minutes of selfishness by Kevin Garnett definitely made me wish that it was Kobe and the Lakers that had won the Championship. At least then we would be expecting the cockiness.


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