Last season Ray Allen returned to Boston and received no love from Kevin Garnett. Garnett sat stone-faced while Ray Allen tried to get his attention for a quick bump of fists. Garnett would have none of it. Garnett felt betrayed by his former teammates. Allen went to the enemy, and now he did not deserve any of Garnett's time.
Now, on Tuesday night, the Celtics will travel to Kevin Garnett's new home in Brooklyn. While it's only a preseason basketball game, there will no doubt be an attempt to show some affection before the game begins. Garnett has spoken openly about his relationship with players that he left behind in Boston. Jared Sullinger and Rajon Rondo being two that he made an attempt to check-in with. Obviously Sullinger and Rondo had rough summers, due to injury and Sullinger's personal issues.
What type of reception will Garnett and Pierce receive tonight? It does not seem like the Celtics are too interested in making a big deal about the whole thing. Jeff Green told Chris Forsberg, "It just got to a point where it was time to move on, for me… When I see them, brief words and then I'll get ready to play."
Obviously, the return to Boston in January will promote much deeper emotions. Fans will want to extend their feelings at the start of the game, then get back to cheering on the Celtics.
However, Tuesday night might be a good chance for the players to get it out of their system. They can say hi, compete on the floor, and then move on. That's really all they want to do. Kevin Garnett will not be left hanging by any Boston Celtics, and I'm sure he'll seek out each and every former teammates and give them some words on encouragement.
After all, for Garnett the shoe is on the other foot. He's the one that made the decision to leave. He pulled his no trade off the table and headed to Brooklyn with Pierce and Jason Terry. It will be interesting to see how the players act, but it seems like the Celtics are not too concerned with anyone but themselves. That seems like the best way to improve right now. Ignore the noise and focus on getting better.
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