Coming over to the Brooklyn Nets for the 2013-2014 NBA season, forward Kevin Garnett is going to see more limited minutes than he has in recent seasons. At 37 years old, Garnett is at the age where he needs to have his minutes monitored to avoid injuries and to maximize his effectiveness when he’s on the floor.
Even at 36 years old last season with the Boston Celtics, Garnett maintained his effectiveness. Playing 29.7 minutes per game, KG averaged 14.8 points, 7.8 rebounds, 2.3 assists, 1.1 steals and 0.9 blocks per game. One of the most notable things about Garnett last season was how his defensive abilities on the interior hadn’t deteriorated much at all. Even at his age and even playing somewhat out of position at center much of the time, he was still able to anchor the Celts’ defense in the post.
However, the developers of NBA 2K14 seem to think his defensive prowess is going to dissipate significantly heading into the upcoming season. As sports video game website Operation Sports posted a video featuring all of the game’s player ratings, we found out that Garnett is the third highest-rated player on the Nets as an 82 overall. However, his post defense was rated at just a B.
Obviously a B isn’t bad, but in translating that to real life, that would be like saying that Garnett is a slightly above-average interior defender, which is far from the case. If it were me giving that grade, Garnett is getting an A- in that department or a B+ at the worst. After all, this is a guy who still ranked in the top 25 in the NBA last season in terms of defensive win shares. He’s not going to suddenly not be able to defend at a high level, even if he does get a little older.
Perhaps it’s a bit nit-picky to single out one grade, but it feels important considering Garnett at this stage of his career. Though he’s still a great offensive player, a great deal of his value is derived from his defense. For him to get slighted in that are just seems a bit unfair. Even if NBA 2K14 doesn’t recognize it, we need to appreciate what KG brings to the table defensively.
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