A chance to go from goat to G.O.A.T.
Now here's the thing. I know that you will be able to get as much money as you want this offseason. You will be able to choose where you play, and to a degree, who you play with. You can decide who your coach is. And even, for the most part, what number you wear.
I could spend this time talking about the Knicks and how, while the team has a lot of money they are generally light on talent. The nice part about having all that money is that they can afford to put you next to any talent that might happen to be for sale. However, before you begin to think about how great a Mike D'Antoni offense with you as the centerpiece would look on tv. And before you imagine playing with Chris Bosh/Carlos Boozer for a half decade. I want to point this out. When Garnett and Allen were added to the Celtics in 2008, there were already a number of players familiar with the system and coach. So Ray and Kevin were really the only new pieces. In New York you will be the new piece along with quite possibly the majority of the starters. Your team will probably do well in the regular season because this is still the eastern conference. And your team will likely make the playoffs because, this is still the eastern conference. But, D'Antoni has never been able to win more than the regular season with his offensive system partially because his defensive system was continually “Just go try guys and then run back really fast and score again.” And while this woks well in the regular season because you can take strong advantage of weak teams, it does not generally work well in the playoffs because late round playoff teams are almost always very very good defensive teams. I'm not going to waste your time with any of that information because the downside of your other options detracts from the idea of what I would humbly suggest to you.
Well, all right, that was kind of dirty pool. I apologize. I will not further resort to similar sleight of hand tricks, I respect you much more than that. I honestly think that when your career is concluded that you'll be considered the best ever or at least in the conversation with Bill and Wilt.
If you were to choose Chicago you will forever be in MJ's shadow. And I really think you can surpass him. But the reality is, if you play in Chicago, for many of the fans there it will always be debated. New Jersey. There are certainly some alluring qualities to the state of New Jersey. Especially given the Nets proximity to New York City. But the thing is. With New Jersey. There is no history there. No tradition of excellence. When you look up at their rafters there is no echoing proof of the winning tradition. You could make them relevant in a way they haven't been in a while. But even if you were to win 5 in a row there, people will say “Well yeah, but if Jordan hadn't left for Basketball he would have won 6.” In Miami they will only call you if they lose out on Dwade. The comparisons would begin immediately. And some people would never be satisfied, despite the fact that Wade only won the single title. You Mr. James are better than that. The Clippers provide a number of opportunities that are harder to disparage. They have Kaman, who is very gifted, and next year they'll be getting Blake Griffin back, provided all goes well. Plus you'll have the opportunity to take the city of LA away from Kobe. Plus, with LA come celebrities that I just can't begin to match. But no matter where you go you will be playoff bound. Because let's face it. A JV middle school team from Latvia would make the NBA playoffs if you were on it, they just wouldn't win the title.
Stay with me for a moment. I promise you it will turn out to be worth your time. Play in Boston. I know that Boston has been tied to some extremely unpleasant defeats for you and that it would be very difficult to join them. And I'm sure it would present very strong social challenges with your relatives and friends. Believe me when I say that writing this will most likely cause me a few social challenges amongst my peers. But Boston can offer you two things that no one else in the League can. To play the remainder of your career with Kendrick Perkins and Rajon Rondo. In less than 5 years Peirce, Allen and Garnett will have retired. But Rondo and Perk are both very young and will have plenty of basketball in them beyond that time. Rondo is currently the best All-around point guard in the East. With Wiliams and Paul both listed ahead of him by most accounts. Here's the thing. If you join Boston's rotation. Between now and when the Current Big Three retire you will be playing on the best basketball team of the salary cap era. And more to the point will win every title there is to be won in that time. And then, they will step down. Play golf on their weekends and champion international charities. And there you'll be, 5 consecutive titles in your pocket already. And then between you Rondo and Perkins begins the era of the Biggest Three. I don't see any reason that you wouldn't be able to retire with more than a dozen rings. With the longest streak of consecutive titles. The league would probably even try to change the structure of play in order to balance things out. Off the top of my head I think the easiest thing would be to allow the other teams to put an extra player on the floor so they could have a permanent double team on you. But you'd still have them outnumbered so it'd be fine. Short of separating the Biggest Three with bullets, machetes, or exile, it wouldn't matter. Then you could retire as the single greatest champion that any sport has ever seen. It is possible that Rondo and Perkins would have one or two more rings than you, but the thing is, no one would be able to talk about their rings without talking about you.
This is an incredibly unique and powerful opportunity not only to be remembered as one of the greats, but the chance to be remembered as the Greatest of All Time. We'd probably start calling you The GOAT before you retired. We'd go to games in your t-shirts. We would cheer at every dunk. Laud you in a way that no basketball town could. And then your number can go in the rafters in the arena that only hangs championship banners. We'd even forgive you for going to Sox games wearing a Yankees hat. This is not an acceptance we would be willing to make for anyone other than The GOAT.
Just imagine next year. Against certain teams we could slide you in at the 4, move KG to 5 and you and the Captain could take turns making the opposing defense look like amateurs. Against other line ups we slide Ray “I'm so good I don't need a nickname” Allen out and put The Truth (I”m so good I have many nicknames) in his stead with you at the 3. And abuse teams with our combined size and quickness. You have been the best on ball defender on your team for a while. You know what it felt like knowing that you had to guard Pierce. Now imagine the next best defender on your team having to think those thoughts because the best defender is going to be tied up trying to stop you. You've got the legs and stamina to be on the floor with Rondo like minutes. Kobe's scoring achievements would pale in comparison. Think how much easier it's going to be with a gifted passer getting you the ball in locations where you can do what you want, what you're best at, and not having to create the offense for yourself. Imagine. Not just the best of this generation. Not the best that hasn't won a title. Not, one of the best there's been. But The Greatest Of All Time.
A martial artist that is also a Celtics fan.