Happy Birthday, Big Ticket!
The Big Ticket, The Kid, KG. Kevin Garnett certainly isn't a kid anymore, as yesterday marked his 40th birthday. Born in 1976, in Mauldin, South Carolina, Garnett was drafted by the Timberwolves with the 5th overall pick in the 1995 NBA draft and has gone on to be considered arguably the greatest player in Wolves history, and one of the best of his generation.
The 15-time NBA All-Star was a McDonald's All-American his senior season at Farragut Career Academy in Chicago, Illinois. Garnett truly burst onto the NBA scene his second season in Minnesota, when he was named an All-Star while averaging 17 points, eight rebounds, and two blocks a game. The future Hall-of-Famer's best season came during the 2003-04 campaign when he averaged 24.2 points per game, led the league in rebounding with 13.9 per game, and added 5 assists per game. He also was a monster defensively, as always, with 2.2 blocks, and 1.5 steals per game and earned one of his nine first-team All-NBA Defense. That also marked the Wolves best chance at a title as KG, along with Sam Cassell, Wally Szczerbiak, and Latrell Sprewell, brought the Wolves within two wins of an NBA Finals appearance.
That was the most success KG would have with the Wolves, but he was able to win a title with the Boston Celtics during the 2008 season. After 6 seasons with Boston, and 1 and a half with Brooklyn, the Big Ticket returned to Minnesota during the 2014-15 to close out his career.
Garnett doesn't have the athleticism that he used to, but on this team filled with young studs, Garnett provides necessary leadership and experience to drive Karl-Anthony Towns and Andrew Wiggins to fulfill their promise.
Garnett has not stated whether he will continue to play this coming season, what would be his 21st, but with Tom Thibodeau as coach it would be hard see him say no to another year.