Oh, Kevin Garnett. I think you have your analogies confused. Yes, everyone loves a bad boy. But that’s your garden-variety bad boy. The type that rides a motorcycle and wears a leather jacket. The kind with a bit of a scruff and bad-ass tattoos. That’s the kind of bad boy that causes guys and girls alike to swoon. The bad boy who gives groin shots is not the kind that everybody loves.
Boston Celtics star Garnett has been steadily working on his bad-bad boy routine for a while. He’s earned a rep for hitting players on the court and for refusing to apologize. Now replay footage has surfaced from a game against the Phoenix Suns last month, and it clearly shows Garnett hitting Suns forward Channing Frye right smack in the groin. All Garnett had to say about the matter was "I never apologize for my actions, as I play with passion."
I’m sorry K.G., but what part of “non-contact sport” do you not understand?
While basketball is certainly not as non-contact as say, golf, it was conceived of and is still defined as a non-contact sport. In sports like football, you expect to be hit. You know you’re going to face-plant at some point during the game. And you know for certain that you are going to be drilled by another player. Part of the strategy of football is to hurt the other guys.
But that’s football. And because they know all those things are going to happen, they wear protection: pads, helmets, cups.
Guess what they wear in basketball? Underwear.
This is a sport where if you so much as blow in a guy’s face the wrong way you can get called for a technical foul.
Sure, contact happens. Guys bump into each other. They jump for the ball at the same time. They hit the deck with shocking regularity. They even run into each other on purpose sometimes.
That is not the same as getting sucker punched or worse, punched in the groin. Those things sometimes occur accidentally, but not, apparently, when Kevin Garnett is around.
Garnett has no respect for his fellow players and even less for the sport of basketball. He’s reduced his position to that of a hired thug. With his track record, he has no business out on the court. And what makes it even worse is his constant refusal to apologize. He’s not being asked to apologize for a minor foul here. He’s being asked to apologize for a violent act of aggression that could potentially cause permanent injury. How long is it until he smashes some guy’s head against the hardwood? What will it take for the Celtics to bench him?
What do you think about Garnett’s actions? Should he be benched?
Image via BangEmSmurf/Flickr