Brooklyn Nets: Remembering Kevin Garnett’s Legacy

Nov 15, 2014; Portland, OR, USA; Brooklyn Nets forward Kevin Garnett (2) rests his head on the basketball stanchion before playing Portland Trail Blazers at Moda Center at the Rose Quarter. Mandatory Credit: Jaime Valdez-USA TODAY Sports

Nov 15, 2014; Portland, OR, USA; Brooklyn Nets forward Kevin Garnett (2) rests his head on the basketball stanchion before playing Portland Trail Blazers at Moda Center at the Rose Quarter. Mandatory Credit: Jaime Valdez-USA TODAY Sports

Former Brooklyn Nets big man Kevin Garnett has retired from the NBA after 21 seasons. Garnett may have only spent a short portion of his career in Brooklyn, but the future Hall-of-Famer made an impact.

To say that Kevin Garnett was a prolific NBA player over more than two decades would be an understatement.

On Friday, Garnett announced that he is retiring from the NBA, after a 21-year career which has him destined for the Hall of Fame.

Garnett’s NBA career, you could say, was like a story book. It consisted of different chapters, each with its own story, and outcome.

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The Big Ticket entered the NBA in 1995-96, and would embark on a career that spanned two decades. Entering his fourth season, Garnett had already been an All-Star twice. However, the 1999-00 season was the beginning of a special streak.

Starting in 1999-00, Garnett made 12 straight All-Star appearances. In total, Garnett was a 15-time NBA All Star. His career took off in Minnesota, as he established himself as one of the best players in the NBA during his first stint with the Timberwolves.

Garnett embarked on a new chapter in his career when the Boston Celtics assembled the Big Three of Garnett, Paul Pierce, and Ray Allen in 2007-08. Garnett and the Celtics won the NBA championship in 2008.

Jan 21, 2015; Sacramento, CA, USA; Brooklyn Nets forward Kevin Garnett (2) reacts after missing a basket against the Sacramento Kings during the third quarter at Sleep Train Arena. The Nets won 103-100. Mandatory Credit: Ed Szczepanski-USA TODAY Sports

A New Chapter in Brooklyn

Garnett spent six seasons in Boston, before beginning the third chapter of his career. In the 2013-14 season, the Brooklyn Nets acquired Garnett, along with Pierce from the Celtics in a blockbuster trade that was made to put the Nets on the map.

The Nets, with Garnett, Pierce, Deron Williams and Joe Johnson, were built to win a championship. Of course, the Nets weren’t able to deliver a championship, but that doesn’t take away from the impact the Big Ticket made.

When Brooklyn acquired Garnett, it was a massive deal. It was extremely notable. It was a blockbuster deal in every sense of the word. At the time, it felt like the Nets and Celtics had switched roles. The Nets immediately became the team with title expectations, and the Celtics retooled after trading away two franchise icons.

Garnett and Pierce brought excitement. Not just because of who they are, but because with them, came expectations. Nets fans hoped the superteam assembled by Billy King would result in Brooklyn hoisting the Larry O’Brien trophy. Unfortunately, that didn’t transpire.

Still, though, Garnett gave the Nets a face. He gave the Nets an identity. Garnett, because of the type of player he was and what he had previously accomplished, brought credibility — as did Pierce.

The Nets gave up a king’s ransom to acquire Garnett and Pierce, a deal which Brooklyn is still feeling the effects from. Brooklyn gave up their first round picks in 2014, 2016, and 2018. The Celtics can also swap first round picks with the Nets in 2017. The deal set Brooklyn back and cost King his job, but the Nets certainly took a shot.

All told, Garnett played in 96 games for the Nets over parts of two seasons.

In February 2015, the Nets dealt Garnett back to Minnesota, which was a homecoming for the Big Ticket.

Garnett’s career had it all: triumphs and tribulations. He had personal success in Minnesota, both personal and team success in Boston, and brought hope to Brooklyn. Garnett was as fun as any player to watch during his time in the league, and he always gave his all while on the court.

Sadly for NBA fans, Garnett is now the latest future Hall-of-Fame inductee to retire this year. Garnett joins both Kobe Bryant and Tim Duncan in calling it a career.

Garnett’s Brooklyn Nets tenure may not have gone as well as he or the team had hoped, but nevertheless, Garnett was one of the top players of his generation.

The Big Ticket walks away from the NBA with loads of accolades and an NBA championship. As for NBA fans, we’re left with memories of a Hall-of-Fame career.

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