Tyronn Lue will make Kevin Garnett an offer he hopes the “Big Ticket” can’t refuse this summer, as the Cleveland Cavaliers coach will try to coax the former NBA superstar out of retirement to play for his team next season.
Lue revealed during a recent appearance on ESPN’s “NBA Lockdown” podcast that he reached out to Garnett in March following Andrew Bogut’s injury and asked him to play backup center for the Cavs.
“It was crazy,” Lue said, per USA TODAY’s For The Win. “I talked to him (Garnett) right before we signed Edy (Tavares), and I was like, ‘Man, you should come back and play for me.’ He was like, ‘Man, ya’ll got a lot going on over there.’ That was before we hit our stride, we’re playing well now. But he was like, ‘If you and (James) Posey were still playing, I would come.’ He said, ‘But ya’ll coaching and y’all are going through what you’re going through.’ He said, ‘Ahhhh, I’m gonna sit this one out.’
“I said, ‘OK, we’ll call you next year.’ He started laughing or whatever. And then his wife Brandi said, ‘I heard you’re trying to get Kevin to come back and play.’ I said, ‘I think next year we might be able to talk him into come playing about eight minutes per game.’ ”
Garnett, 40, retired in September, ending his storied NBA career after 21 years.
Garnett’s knees might not be able to endure the rigors of being an everyday player, but Lue understands the value the veteran could add behind the scenes.
“He’s great for your culture,” Lue said. “He does everything the right way. It’s all about winning. It’s not about him. To have a Hall of Famer like that, such a great player, to make it all about team, it’s unbelievable.”
Garnett now hosts the popular “Area 21” show on Turner Sports’ “Inside the NBA” broadcasts. But if Garnett feels the itch to play again next season, Lue apparently will be more than willing bring him on board.
Thumbnail photo via Bruce Kluckhohn/USA TODAY Sports Images