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Saturday, August 13, 2022

Kevin Garnett Nearly Joined the ‘We Believe’ Warriors Instead of the Celtics

Kevin Garnett had a long and storied career in basketball, joining the Minnesota Timberwolves in 1995. He brought them to their first NBA Championship win over Kobe Bryant’s Lakers. The year before that they lost the finals by one point to Michael Jordan’s Bulls but Kevin was still unanimously selected MVP of the league with 24 points per game and 11 rebounds per game! After spending 15 years together, Kevin decided he wanted a new challenge so after another championship run he left for Boston where his rivalry with Rajon Rondo quickly became public knowledge…

Kevin Garnett was a high school basketball player in Chicago. He nearly joined the “We Believe” Warriors instead of the Celtics. The Warriors were coached by current Golden State head coach Steve Kerr, and they won their first championship that year.

Kevin Garnett is the cherry on top of the “Big Three” sundae for the Boston Celtics. Only, he was on the verge of joining the Golden State Warriors.

Garnett moved to Boston after years of heartbreaking playoff failures and severe feuds with Minnesota Timberwolves ownership (that enmity still exists today). With Paul Pierce and Ray Allen, he made a wonderful combo right away.

Garnett, on the other hand, might have been a part of the Bay Area’s “We Believe” period.

With the Boston Celtics in 2007-08, Kevin Garnett won a championship.

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They looked for the golden ticket with a frustrated Paul Pierce searching for a way out and the Celtics anxious to make a huge move. Or, to put it another way, the Big Ticket.

Kevin Garnett was acquired from the Minnesota Timberwolves in exchange for five players and two first-round selections. Following the early signing of Ray Allen, the Celtics formed a trinity approximating their three-leaf clover emblem with the inclusion of the All-NBA power forward.

Garnett was instrumental in Boston’s victory. He was named Defensive Player of the Year after averaging 18.8 points, 9.2 rebounds, and 3.4 assists while setting the tone with his defense.

In the playoffs, the Big Ticket improved his game, averaging 20.4 points, 10.5 rebounds, and 3.3 assists. In the NBA Finals, he had the team’s top defensive rating of 99 as the Celtics won their first championship in 22 years.

Without Garnett’s two-way contributions, Boston is unlikely to win the championship. Surprisingly, the Celtics came close to missing out on KG.

Garnett was heavily pursued by the Warriors.

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The Celtics were the finest team in basketball in 2007-08, but the Golden State Warriors were likely the most thrilling.

In the 2007 NBA playoffs, the Warriors stunned the world by upsetting the No. 1-seeded Dallas Mavericks in possibly the biggest upset in NBA history. The Dubs energized spectators and sparked a “We Believe” period in the Bay Area with a brilliant scoring backcourt of Baron Davis and Monta Ellis and gritty wing players like Stephen Jackson, Al Harrington, and Matt Barnes.

Garnett was on the verge of becoming a mainstay of the movement.

During an interview on the Draymond Green Show, Barnes stated that Golden State attempted to get KG in the summer of 2007. He said the Warriors sought to trade the Big Ticket for a deal that included Jason Richardson and a first-round selection.

That transaction never materialized. The Celtics’ Godfather offer was too good to pass up for the Timberwolves. But what if Garnett made the trip to California?

Would the Warriors’ championship hopes have been vindicated if they had won The Big Ticket?

Former Boston Celtics forward Kevin Garnett battles for a rebound during a game against the Golden State Warriors

Former Boston Celtics forward Kevin Garnett battles for a rebound during a game against the Golden State Warriors In a game against the Golden State Warriors, former Boston Celtics power forward Kevin Garnett grabs a defensive rebound | Barry Chin/The Boston Globe via Getty Images

The 2007-08 Warriors didn’t make the playoffs, but it’s easy to forget that they were really better than the “We Believe” club.

Golden State won 48 games this season, six more than the previous season. The Celtics were first in terms of points per game and fourth in terms of offensive rating. So, what went wrong? Why didn’t they reach the playoffs? On the defensive end, there is a lapse. In 2007-08, the Warriors allowed the most points per game, placing 23rd in defensive rating.

Given that Garnett won Defensive Player of the Year with the Celtics that season, it’s easy to imagine the effect he may have had.

The Warriors could have been able to use Harrington as a versatile sixth player if they had acquired Garnett. Or, alternatively, KG may start in lieu of the less athletic Andris Biedrins. In any case, his presence in the paint would have surely aided Golden State’s team defense.

Furthermore, Garnett embodied the spirit that radiated throughout the Warriors’ franchise at the moment. He had an uncontrolled energy and a merciless competitiveness when he played. Perhaps it would have been the deciding factor.

Stephen Curry, Klay Thompson, and Draymond Green finally led the Warriors into a dynastic period. But it’s interesting to speculate what would have happened if the Big Ticket had arrived in the Bay Area in 2007.

Basketball Reference provided the statistics.

RELATED: Paul Pierce pushed for Kevin Garnett to be his teammate two years before it happened after a trip to the free-throw line

Watch This Video-

Kevin Garnett nearly joined the “We Believe” Warriors instead of the Celtics. The “We Believe” Warriors were an NBA team that was created by Baron Davis and Stephen Jackson in 2008. Kevin Garnett wanted to join them, but they couldn’t afford him. Reference: how old was kevin garnett in 2008.

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