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In 91 games with the Boston Celtics, Kevin Garnett was able to accomplish what he could not in over 900 games in Minnesota: reach the NBA Finals. Yet when KG made his biggest step ever towards the promised land, not a single Timberwolves fan I know felt the least bit of resentment. There was only joy. This was something we’d been waiting for since David Stern called his name that night in June of ’95, and although it didn’t happen the way we’d all dreamt it would, it still happened nonetheless. Blue and green or green and white – the color of the jersey didn’t matter. It was all about the man inside it; the man who shed our tears, bled our blood, and bore our pain for twelve seasons, the man who came to embody everything the Minnesota Timberwolves stood for, the man who took us all to a higher place.
Perhaps the most surprising moment in all the post-game celebration was how somber Kevin Garnett appeared. This is the man who used to slam the basketball against his skull after missing free throws, who lept up on the scorer’s table and waved a towel after defeating the Kings in the semi-final round in ’04, who broke down sobbing because his team was under .500 in 2005. Now that he was finally headed towards The Finals after thirteen years of striving, you would expect KG to be on the brink of a seizure. Instead, he was just the opposite: stone-faced, emotionless, and distant. After thinking about Garnett’s reaction for a bit, I’ve come to the conclusion that this was his way of "getting down to business". He was making a conscious decision to not hoot or holler about winning the Eastern Conference, because that was never his goal. From the moment that final second ticked off the clock Friday night, Kevin Garnett was focused on nothing else but winning his title. The Big Ticket will never have a better chance to raise the Larry O’Brien Trophy than he does right now and these next four to seven games could set his NBA legacy in stone. For him, the stakes have truly never been higher.