Monday, July 30, 2007

The Kid Goes to Beantown?

Moon Over a Pug
Whew! What a day in sports. The genius succumbs to Leukemia, a big loss for sports fans who appreciate guys who can use big words and know what they mean. R.I.P., coach.

Then the MLB trading deadline creeps up -- they showed how many minutes and hours were left in a counter along the bottom of the screen during ESPN's Baseball Tonight earlier -- and now this big shocker -- Kevin Garnett appears headed to Boston after spending his entire career in Minnesota.

KG, the Kid in Beantown. To play alongside Paul Pierce and recent acquisition Ray Allen. You gotta be kidding me. But if reports are true and the trade gets consummated in the next couple of days, the balance of power in the already shaky East, is about to change.

And there's going to be one pissed off shooting guard somewhere in LaLa Land.

Garnett has been loyal (to a fault, some say) to his peeps in 'Sota and has never come out and asked for a trade, no matter how bleak life seemed for a club that just could not get passed the first round of the playoffs. The one time they did was losing to eventually NBA title runners-up Lakers.

And Boston wasn't his first choice for a new address. He wanted to go to a team that could win, preferably in a warmer climate (those below-zero Lake Wobegon winters gettin' to ya, Kev?) and for awhile it looked like that would be Phoenix, playing alongside his new good buddy, Steve Nash.

But former Celtics teammates Kevin McHale and Danny Ainge (now GMs for the Wolves and Celtics, respectively) got together for one more assist and score. The deal, which would net Minnesota young comer Al Jefferson, is about the best the Wolves could hope for with what's on the market and available. And it frees them up to fill out their roster with draft picks, through free agency and trades. More important, perhaps, it allows this team to move on in a way that helps their future and doesn't disrespect the contribution of the NBA's classiest man, to a franchise that picked a young diamond in the rough straight out of high school and found if not silver trophies, than a heart of pure gold.

I love this deal for Boston, too. Allen, Pierce and KG make a nice nucleus and in the talent-poor East, it has to anoint the Celtics as the team to beat. Suddenly, Boston is a basketball town again. Danny Ainge saves his job and maybe Kevin McHale saves a franchise.

Are you starting to feel it? Me too. I can't wait for training camp.

No comments: