Kevin Garnett reunites with Doc Rivers as big man consultant
LOS ANGELES (AP) — Kevin Garnett has joined the Los Angeles Clippers as a consultant to help with the team’s big men four months after ending his 21-year NBA career.
The move reunites Garnett with Doc Rivers, his former coach in Boston where they won the 2008 NBA championship together, as well as former Celtics teammates Paul Pierce and Brandon Bass.
Garnett will work with center DeAndre Jordan and forward Blake Griffin after he is expected to return later this month after having surgery. Backup center Marreese Speights is also expected to get Garnett’s attention.
Garnett and Rivers met earlier in the week to go over his duties and Garnett mentioned things about the Clippers that he’d seen from afar.
“His enthusiasm is always nice to have in any gym,” Rivers said before Wednesday night’s game against Orlando. “He’ll work with the bigs and just give knowledge to anyone who wants it. He has great knowledge.”
Garnett certainly has the credentials to earn the respect of his proteges. Besides his lone NBA championship, the 40-year-old former power forward-center was the league’s MVP in 2004, a 15-time All-Star, a nine-time All-Defensive first teamer, and an Olympic gold medalist.
He averaged 17.8 points, 10 rebounds and 3.7 assists in his career, most of which was spent with the Minnesota Timberwolves.
Jordan has expressed enthusiasm about occasionally working with Garnett at practices.
“They both have a great amount of intensity they bring to the game,” Rivers said. “Kevin had the best habits on off-days.”
Garnett won’t be on the bench during games. He first was with team during training camp in September.
After retiring in September, Garnett launched a television career with TNT, where he now hosts his own segment on the cable network’s “Inside the NBA” show.