|Posted by shawn cassidy on February 18, 2013 at 6:00 AM|
If challenged, not to fail. Like living legends, undismayed, Determined to prevail. Like champions, to stand their ground, Defiant to the end. Kevin brings out the best in everyone, and he brings out the worst in others. He has a bond with his little basketball soul mate Rondo, but at the end of the day. His friendship with Pierce sets the stage for the rest of the season.
Both valiant inside. Two sets of eyes, two sets of ears. Two hearts that beat as one. Their loyalty outlasts the years that have been troubling, or masterpieces. Kevin was asked a few questions, and what came out of that interview was his allegiance to Pierce. For some Pierce should have replaced Rondo in the All-Star game, and I'm one of those fans that believe he should have. KG thinks the same.
“He absolutely should be here,” said Garnett. “I believe when you’re deserving and you’re a great player, you should be rewarded for that. He’s one of the best players in our league, hands down.
“Obviously, when you get older you get compared to whoever. But when it comes down to it, no one hits tougher shots than Paul, no one puts the ball in the basket better than Paul.
“There aren’t too many scorers who do what he does, and he’s doing it at an older age,” he said. “You have to take that into account. Obviously things change, the league is trying to promote other guys who are doing well. Not to take anything away from them, but the league should recognize who’s deserving.”
Garnett has no problem listing the ways Pierce — at least during the last 21⁄2 weeks — earned his right to be in Houston.
It starts with the Celtics’ 7-1 record since their Jan. 27 win over Miami — the first game missed by Rondo because of his ACL tear.
“Paul’s led a team,” said Garnett. “Since I’ve been on the team he’s been one of our leaders. We lost Rondo, and it was going to be tough, but we have leaders who have led before. Leaders who have carried the offense before.
“Are we a better team without Rondo? No,” he said. “We have to do it by committee versus one guy who does a lot of different things for us. But we have leaders and guys who are willing to fight and scrap. I’m taking that team over any team that’s just talented.”
The need of Garnett and Pierce to once again carry this team has also accentuated their friendship, which reaches back to adolescence.
“Paul and I continue to be friends, and as teammates we get closer and closer,” said Garnett. “The families are close, and our relationship continues to grow. We’re like brothers, very up front with each other. We share a lot of personal things with each other.”
KG won't say the C's are better without Rondo, because when the dust settles this team is not. Can they win without Rondo yes of course. But can they win a title without Rondo. Maybe, and that's a big maybe. With Rondo the Celtics could have beaten the Heat without any doubt in my mind. But without him. The Celtics will need to put on their hard hats, and work extremely hard to even get to that point. On that quest, KG, and Pierce will lead the Celtics alone for the first time without another star along side them. Ray's gone, and now Terry must take that role, and with Rondo gone Green must become that great player that we hope he can be. But as I said KG, and Pierce will go at it as a duo instead of a Big Three.