We missed this yesterday, which is a shame, but Avery Johnson had some very complimentary things to say about Kevin Garnett before the game.
These quotes come courtesy of Mike Mazzeo at ESPN New York:
“The funny thing is, I wish he would be quiet on the floor and not call out your plays,” the Nets coach said in a bemused and complimentary tone Thursday morning prior to his team’s nationally-televised contest against KG’s Celtics. “He’s seen so much. We’ll call a play and he’ll say, ‘Joe [Johnson] is going over here and Deron [Williams] is going here.’ It’s not funny anymore, OK?
“As much as (Rajon) Rondo quarterbacks their offense, (KG) quarterbacks their defense. … I like every now and then when we’ll surprise him with something, and then maybe he’ll look at the bench and curse the other coaches out, not me.”
We are guessing that Kevin Garnett also had a feeling that all the characters in “Lost” were in purgatory the whole time. We also suspect he never really cared for that David Petraeus character from the beginning, and that Nate Silver is actually a long-lost relative.
Seriously, Garnett remains one of the best defensive players in the NBA, even in his old age, in part because he can see plays developing before most of us realize that the other team has even brought the ball into the frontcourt. This is one of the reasons why there is still hope Boston’s defense will once again become one of the stingiest in the league once it has adjusted to all of the new pieces. Once teammates are used to Garnett’s barked instructions and the various rotations, it’s going to be a lot easier to shut teams down defensively because of the whole “We Know What They Are Going To Do Before They Do It” thing.
The problem, of course, is that Doc has wisely put Garnett on a 30ish minutes-per-game limit and is holding to that pattern religiously. So teammates will have to first get used to Boston’s rotations and defensive tendencies, then they will have to get used to defending well even with their leader on the bench.
Either way, it’s still nice to see KG get some well-deserved dap for his defensive prowess as well as for his psychic powers.
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