During this lockout, I have purposefully avoided reading, listening or watching anything NBA-related for fear that the truth would hit me hard, and I might actually cry. Despite my best efforts to avoid this, yesterday, I looked at the picture of Kevin Garnett hanging near my desk and I came to a disturbing realization. Say for some strange reason, the NBA and it’s players don’t come to an agreement and this labor disagreement lasts the entire season. Older players, especially those who have suffered from serious injuries, may not return to the court. Ever.
I may have already watched Kevin Garnett play his last game and not even realized it. The NBA lockout and the potential loss of a season is a constant topic of conversation in the office so when I brought up this fact, several of my co-workers hinted that it was time for me to latch my NBA love to the next great player and follow his career. Someone even told me to consider my loved ones, would I rather watch them deteriorate or see them go painlessly?
Given the way last season ended for Kevin Garnett and the Celtics, I desperately want to see him return and give it one more shot. It was his passion and tenacity that drew me to him in the first place. It was his never give up attitude that had him spend his best seasons in Minnesota carrying a lackluster team on his shoulders. He’s always held on to his belief in himself, even when he was constantly getting knocked down in his early career.
I guess watching him fall and get back up, fail and return to play another season just as passionately and never seeing his desire or his hunger wane has led me to the belief that he would always live to fight another season. Nothing has ever been able to stop him so the idea that a stupid labor disagreement would be the end of his career has never dawned on me. And to be honest, it’s almost a little too much for me to bear. This may seem silly to some of you that don’t share my passion for sports but it’s the truth.
We all imagine our favorite players going out on top, or at least going out swinging. Never do we imagine losing them to things out of their control. So for Kevin Garnett and me, this might be the end or the road. The final realization that there is an end and next season doesn’t always come.
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