Kevin Garnett, often known as KG, is basketball. Growing up, he shot baskets for hours every day. Friends remember him having a ball in his hands at all times. He more than enjoyed the game. He was obsessed with it. Friends say he had to play.
Kevin Maurice Garnett was born May 19, 1976, in Mauldin, South Carolina. His mother and father never married. Kevin grew up with this mother, stepfather, and two sisters. Kevin’s stepfather did not support Kevin playing basketball. He wouldn’t even allow a basketball hoop in the driveway. Kevin found the court at a local park to be his real home.
In high school he was voted Mr. Basketball. He averaged 25 points and 18 rebounds a game. High school coaches say he was a generous team player. He easily could have scored more points a game, but he passed the ball and helped others score. It wasn’t about how many points he made; it was about playing the game he loved.
Kevin entered the 1995 NBA draft right out of high school. He was the first player to go from high school to the NBA in twenty years. On October 2, 1995, Kevin signed a three-year, $5.6 million contract with the Minnesota Timberwolves. He was just nineteen years old.
The NBA was a good fit for KG. In his second season with the Timberwolves, he went to the All-Star Game. In fact, he became the first Timberwolves player to start in the All-Star Game. He also led the team to its first playoff game that same year.
The 6’11” forward remained loyal to the team that first drafted him back in 1995. In 1997, he signed a record $125 million contract over six years. This was the largest deal ever for an athlete in a team sport. In 2003, he agreed to a five-year, $100 million deal with the Timberwolves.
Kevin played with two other teams between 2007 and 2015. In 2016, he retired from professional basketball as a player for the Minnesota Timberwolves.