Guys, you really aren’t going to believe this, but Kevin Garnett doesn’t like to be called soft.
I know, right? It’s weird that the most intense, competitive person to come through Boston in quite some time bristles a little bit when his coach calls the team soft, but actually, it’s totally true. Here’s the transcription of Garnett’s interview with WEEI, after being asked about Rivers’ comments.
I don’t really want to say that. I don’t really want to say that we are soft because as men, and where I am from, you don’t call another man soft. … But you’re right, we need to start the games with some more physicality. We gotta meet the physicality when we get to a high level. When you find yourself on the heels, you gotta meet it head on. Coach’s assessment is what it is. You can take it as criticism or he is trying to make us better. It’s your call, but like I said, each guy has to look at himself in the mirror and believe he can do better.”
“It is what it is” is the most loaded athlete cliche in interview jargon. In the context of an apology, it means “Sorry, not sorry.” In the context of a lost game, it means “I’m seething with anger, but I’ll get fined if I curse.” And in the case of a coach calling his team soft…I don’t know what it means, actually. Does KG disagree with Rivers? Probably. Does he think Rivers is just trying to inspire his team? Evidently.
But does he approve of Rivers’ inspirational methods? Eh. It is what it is.
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