Talk about providing me with a perfect segue; all I've got to do is keep moving and it leads me directly to the Counterfeit Ticket, who continued to dig his own (career) grave in Game 5.
If Kevin Garnett, indeed, is a franchise player, would it be too much to ask it to be for the franchise currently paying him?
Barely shooting 40 percent (and, yes, nearly 13 boards) so far, Garnett has gone to the line a grand total of 18 times in 192 minutes.
Put another way, he has initiated more contact close-fisting than the nebbish in that phone company commercial.
I know, how dare I mock Garnett?
Excuse me, but I have a lot of trouble being overly sympathetic at the sad sight of Garnett aborting both welfare payments with the Celtics down a deuce at the 2:31 mark, and three of four, overall, under pressure with the Game 5 game clock winding down. Game.
How many times have we seen the $20 million-plus wonder beat on his chest, pull on his jersey and scream obscenities after dunking on some schmuck during the regular season? Now here he is at the highest plateau short-arming freebies while stumbling around inside guarded by giraffe Pau Gasol either taking fade-away jumpers or looking to have the refs bail him out.
"Where's the fire when K.G. is down 20?" Artest declared in the first half of Game 4. "Watch how he goes back to huddle like a puppy. You're either a soldier all the time or you're not. You can't be a part-time soldier."
Where was Garnett's ****iness in Sunday's potential closeout game? I want to know. Already minus your starting center due to Kendrick Perkins' shoulder injury, the Celtics needed K.G. to pull a Cedric Maxwell and carry his teammates on his back. Instead the Counterfeit Ticket spent 15 minutes on the bench on account of infantile reaching fouls.
Articulate after me: "Fake Franchise Player."
This just in: Jackson is thinking about employing a "Gouge-a-Garnett" strategy and force him to hit the unmolested 15-footer.
To Garnett's credit, he vowed at Sunday's postgame press conference, if fouled, "I will not pass up taking the free throws."
You can't ask for any more than that.
Meanwhile, Paul Pierce has emerged as the Celtics' MVP, something I've been advocating all season. He and Ray Allen are the ideal go-to-teammates for Garnett, dependable more times than not in momentous games such as tonight, though I look for Doc Rivers to slant the offense toward K.G. early and often to show him there's no faith lost.
Not everyone has supported Pierce as long as yours truly. Column castigator Frank Drucker swears "it took a solid decade away from Rick Pitino to bring out the best in him."