Kevin Garnett always found Seattle to be a difficult place for opponents. He played in 27 games there during his NBA career, leaving the court as a winner only eight times.
He remembers those days. And respects them, too.
In a wide-ranging interview this week with The Associated Press, Garnett covered plenty of topics, including the announcement over the weekend that he officially is a member of the Class of 2020 for the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame, his relationship with fellow inductee Kobe Bryant, the coronavirus pandemic, and his plans for the next five and 10 years.
But there was also a surprise: Garnett revealed a deep affinity for Seattle, to the point where he said he’d like to see the NBA return to that city — and said he would bring a team there if he could.
“If I have a dream, I would say that I would love to be able to go and buy the Seattle SuperSonics and reactivate the Seattle Northwest and get NBA loving back going into that area,” said Garnett, who starred for Minnesota and Boston and also played for Brooklyn. “I think it’s needed and it’s essential. Seattle was huge to our league. Not just Portland, but the whole Northwest. I would love to be able to do that.”
These days, it’s not that uncommon for Garnett to be thinking big.
He found out late last week that he had been officially selected to the Hall of Fame, part of a nine-person group that will include four going in as players — himself, Bryant, Tim Duncan and Tamika Catchings. He raved about each for various reasons; Bryant for his competitive fire, Duncan because they were elite at the same position, Catchings for her body of work.
He said he still savors his battles with Bryant and Duncan.
“I like to think that steel sharpens steel, and I like to think that all three of us pushed each other to be the best that we could be,” Garnett said. “To be going in such a class like this, I’m more than honored.”
And the news came at a time where the coronavirus pandemic overshadows everything. Garnett has even limited how much news he can absorb, saying too much of what he sees is “scary.”