With Kevin Garnett headed to Springfield as a first-ballot Hall of Famer, the Timberwolves would surely like to retire KG’s iconic No. 21. The Big Ticket’s response? No, thanks.
“I’m not entertaining it,” Garnett told Shams Charania of The Athletic, citing a falling out with T-Wolves owner Glen Taylor. “It’s not genuine.” The former league MVP bookended his career with stints in Minnesota and was on his way to becoming a minority owner, but those plans went awry following coach Flip Saunders’ sudden death in 2015. Garnett had a close relationship with Saunders before his passing, but the 43-year-old never saw eye to eye with Taylor.
“I won’t forgive Glen,” said the All-Star power forward, who will have his No. 5 retired by the Boston Celtics next season. “I thought he was a straight-up person, straight-up businessman, and when Flip died, everything went with him.” Garnett still carries animosity from his acrimonious split with the Timberwolves in 2016, which reportedly involved “tense” buyout negotiations with Taylor. “My years in Minnesota and in that community, I cherish,” said Garnett, who spent 14 of his 21 NBA seasons in the Gopher State. “But I don’t do business with snakes.”
Those are some strong words from the 15-time All-Star, who made the rounds recently while promoting his feature-film debut in Uncut Gems alongside comedy vet Adam Sandler. Taylor isn’t the only NBA fixture Garnett has held a grudge against. Never one to mince words, the former Defensive Player of the Year famously gave ex-teammate Ray Allen the silent treatment after he abandoned the Celtics to team up with LeBron James and the rival Miami Heat as a free agent in 2012. With his resentment of Timberwolves management coming to the surface, Garnett’s upcoming Hall of Fame speech has the potential to be very interesting.