Back on July 29 when the smoke was getting pretty thick around the KG to Boston rumors, I posted this here on LOY's Place.
Personally I don't like this trade. Al Jefferson is only 22 years old. He was hampered by injuries his first two seasons and last year, when he was finally healthy, he had a break out year. He averaged 16 points and 11 rebounds last season, in spite of facing double and triple teams for much of the season when Pierce was out. He has worked hard all summer and should come back even better. He and Perk have developed great chemistry. Kevin Garnett is 31 years old and has put in 12 hard years in the NBA. He is definitely one of the top players in the league but for how long? Al has 9 years to play before even getting to Garnett's age. I just don't want to watch Al Jefferson tearing up the league for years after KG is retired or goes to another team while the Celtics are back to square one and rebuilding again.
Granted, when I wrote this, we were still under the impression that KG didn't want to come to Boston and an extension had not yet been announced so that factored into my thoughts, but I really like Big Al and all I could think of was watching Chauncey Billups win championships while the Celtics struggled.
But, I have to admit I was wrong. I still like Big Al and still believe that he is going to be a perennial All Star, but trading for KG was the right thing to do. I can't believe how exciting this team is to watch and how the outlook for the Celtics has changed with just that one trade. I didn't watch KG all that much when he was in Minnesota. I tried watching a few games after Ricky was traded, but watching Mark Blount play was so irritating that I only watched a couple. I had no idea that he was this good. I love the intensity he brings to every minute of every game. I love the chemistry he has with his teammates. And I love his unselfish play and his willingness to do whatever it takes to win. He is an other worldly player and we had to get him when the opportunity arose.
Reasons I love KG as a Celtic: 1. Success. The Celtics are 5-0 and KG is a big reason for that. He was named Eastern Conference Player of the Week and here are his stats for the 3 games last week: Nov. 7 vs. Denver: 23 points, 13 rebounds, 7 assists and 4 steals Nov. 9 vs. Atlanta: 27, 19 rebounds,6 assists and 3 blocks Nov. 10 @ New Jersey: 18 points, 14 rebounds, 6 assists and 3 steals Not only is he tearing it up with points and rebounds, but he leads the team in assists and is tied with Rondo for the most steals per game. This is incredible for a power forward and it just goes to show how very good he is. If there is any doubt about his passing, just watch this clip of a behind the back pass to Rondo.
2. Intensity. He is so intense that it just exudes to the rest of the team. Whether it is coming out onto the floor to start the game or when the game is close, or sitting on the bench cheering on his teammates with a 20 point lead in the 4th quarter. The photos below are all of KG in the 4th quarter of blow out wins cheering his teammates on from the bench. I am certain that if you look up intensity in the dictionary, there has to be a picture of KG there to illustrate it.
3. Chemistry. I knew that Al and Perk had chemistry and was afraid that 3 all stars on a team wouldn't be able to play together but nothing could be farther from the truth. KG, RA and PP complement each other and their games mesh perfectly. They are all playing unselfishly and because of that, the whole team is playing unselfishly and the chemistry has been incredible. This is from the Hoopsworld article on Perk and KG:
Even though Perkins and Jefferson still talk almost every other day, Perkins bonded quickly with his new teammate. Garnett was initially surprised by how fast they clicked and their bond makes it that much easier for them to do their jobs. "We bonded real fast," Garnett said. "I expected me, Paul (Pierce), and Ray (Allen) to bond … but Perk and I have no choice. We're the front line so we're responsible for the hole and making sure shots are blocked and rebounds and trying to stay with what the goal is -- protect that rim and protect that paint especially as much as possible. So he and I have to be on the same page if anybody." A compliment like that goes a long way with a 23-year-old who once tried to emulate many different aspects of Garnett's game, especially his fade away jumper. "It means a lot," Perkins said. "We've got a good bond off the court. We're really starting to feed off each other, know each other, and I think right now we've come a long way … It's a good thing."
Watch this on court chemistry between KG and Perk. What a thing of beauty.
4. Celtic Pride. Since coming to Boston, KG has been all about Celtic pride from complementing the organization to talking about the quality of the uniforms. He loves Boston and loves the fans. He is all about Celtic tradition and Celtic pride and I love that.
5. Hope. Just like the days when Larry Bird was on the court for the Celtics, I honestly believe that the Celtics can beat any team that they play. It has been a long time since I have felt that way about the Celtics. As much as I loved our young players, I always just hoped that they would play well and knew in my heart most nights that the other team had to have an off night for us to beat them. But, with KG on the court, I just believe that he will get the win some way, some how. I always felt that way watching Larry Bird play also.
And as a bonus, KG is there to keep Doc straight. This video from the huddle in a time out is amazing.
So, there you have it. I was wrong. KG is an incredible player and if we win the championship I have no doubt that he will be the reason for it. He's that good. He keeps himself in great shape and having him for the next 5 years is phenomenal. This is one time I really am happy to be proved wrong. [Discuss this topic on the Celtics Green Forums!]