Yesterday Kevin Garnett took some time out of his busy schedule to sit down with iconic ESPN anchor, Dan Patrick. Among other things, KG discussed his currents views on the lockout, his unbridled passion for video games, and his near trade to the Los Angeles Lakers.
I must have been asleep for the summer of 2007, because I don’t remember any KG to LA trade rumors circulating whatsoever. I only remember that Yi Jianlian was poised to become the number 5 pick of the NBA draft, a move that would likely still leave the Celtics in the cellar of their division.
Regardless, the situation was apparently very close to happening, as KG remarked “I was pretty close, to be honest. What disturbed me about whole the Laker situation was just Kobe and Phil at the time. They were at each other pretty bad. And a new situation full of uncertainty wasn’t something I wanted to get into.”
He later went on to clarify that the choice to not be traded to the Lakers was his, but that he wasn’t necessarily worried about the friction between Kobe and Phil. It was simply a situation that he didn’t want to be a part of. Cryptic words from The Big Ticket.
If anything, KG is reprising a situation that we familiar with the NBA know to be inherently true. Kobe Bryant is a difficult teammate to be around. He, much like KG, has an unrivaled thirst for victory. That desire, however, can manifest itself in some seriously damning situations. Just ask Pau Gasol how he feels when Kobe makes a point of showing him up on national television in front of millions of American’s. His sheepish look says it all.
With that said, KG is a much different player, and person, than Pau Gasol. The history of his character in the NBA tells us that he is an exemplary team player. But he won’t be bossed around by anybody, even if it’s one of the best players to ever play the game. Despite their collective successes, the Phil and Kobe saga has at times been a circus. The acrimony that once existed between Kobe, Shaq, and Phil was only something that could be manufactured within the confines of Hollywood.
Since Shaq’s departure from Los Angeles, and his subsequent path as an NBA journeyman, the Lakers have once again been met with a flurry of success. Undoubtedly, this is because Kobe and Phil are two of the all-time greats at what they do. They’ve proven it with 2 championships in the last 3 seasons, sans Shaquille O’Neal.
That still does not alter the fact that Kobe Bryant is a recalcitrant individual. He has had rifts with Shaq, Phil, Pau, and likely several other high profile individuals that we are not aware of. KG didn’t want to part of that group, and rightfully so. After all of this time he has had to reflect, I’m sure he’s satisfied with the ring he earned in 2008.
About the Author
Written by Michael Johnson
I am a recent graduate of Endicott College having earned my Bachelors Degree in Communications. I bleed green and will until I die. If you'd like to talk sports I'm available on facebook and my email address is Johnson3448@comcast.net. You can also follow me on twitter @johnsoncookie.