Celtics

Kendrick Perkins tells great stories about Kevin Garnett's unselfishness

Kendrick Perkins tells great stories about Kevin Garnett's unselfishness

It seems like there is no shortage of Kevin Garnett stories, especially from his time with the Celtics. I mean, it's been six years since the Celtics traded him and Paul Pierce to the Nets and every once and a while we hear a new story about how great a teammate or how crazy a competitor he was. 

In a preview for Kristine Leahy's show "Fair Game" on FS1, Perkins told a few tales about the future Hall of Famer's legendary unselfishness, calling him the most unselfish guy he's ever been around. 

Perkins, who played with Garnett in Boston for three-and-a-half seasons, recalled how he did not save his unselfishness just for his play on the court, but for interns, assistants, ball-boys and video coordinators too. 

“He would have his tailor come in and he’d buy each one of them five custom suits," Perkins said. 

Of course, Garnett wasn't perfect. In the interview, Perkins mentioned how players had to wait for him on the team plane because he was getting a long massage, and there are the popular stories of Garnett yelling at anyone who took food from the postgame buffet before the players did. But he seemed to always make up for it and then some. 

“The biggest thing was when he bought everybody in the organization Rolex watches. That was over the top," Perkins said. “I tell him all the time, sometimes it’s okay to be a selfish a little bit because he always put himself last."

The formula seemed to work for Garnett, who retired with an NBA championship ring, an MVP award, a Defensive Player of the Year award and nine All-NBA selections. He will also most likely have his jersey retired with two teams (Celtics and Timberwolves), which is a feat accomplished by few players to ever play in the NBA. 

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NBA odds: Celtics vs. Heat point spread, moneyline, over/under total for seeding game

NBA odds: Celtics vs. Heat point spread, moneyline, over/under total for seeding game

The Boston Celtics will play arguably their most important NBA seeding game in the bubble Tuesday night when they take on the Miami Heat.

A victory for the C's would give them a 3.5-game edge over the Heat for the No. 3 seed in the Eastern Conference playoff race with five seeding games remaining. Miami would still mathematically have a chance to overtake Boston for the No. 3 seed, but a 3.5-game deficit is a lot to make up in just five games. 

Don't miss NBC Sports Boston's coverage of Celtics-Heat, which begins Tuesday at 5:30 p.m. with Celtics Pregame Live followed by tip-off at 6:30 p.m. You can also stream the game on the MyTeams App.

The Celtics beat the Heat twice already this season, once at TD Garden in December and again at Miami in January. Oddsmakers have made the C's betting favorites to win Tuesday and sweep the season series. The Heat also are playing on the second night of a back-to-back. Miami lost a hard-fought matchup to the Toronto Raptors on Monday afternoon. 

One of the keys for the Celtics will be defending the 3-point line. The Heat lead the league with a 38.7 percent success rate on 3-point shots. Miami has several players capable of getting hot from beyond the arc, including second-year shooting guard Duncan Robinson, whose 44.6 3-point percentage ranks fourth-best in the league.

Here are the latest betting lines for Celtics vs. Heat, courtesy of DraftKings Sportsbook.

Point spread: Celtics -3 (-112), Heat +3 (-109)
Moneyline: Celtics (-157), Heat (+132)
Total points: Over 219.5 (-113), Under 219.5 (-108)

Celtics hit encouraging injury report milestone entering Heat matchup

Celtics hit encouraging injury report milestone entering Heat matchup

The "hospital" Boston Celtics are no more.

The Celtics dealt with a steady stream of injuries throughout the 2019-20 NBA season, from Jaylen Brown's sprained ankle to Marcus Smart's various bumps and bruises to Kemba Walker's balky knee.

And while Walker's knee still keeps some C's fans up at night, the NBA's four-month layoff did wonders for the overall health of the squad.

Don't miss NBC Sports Boston's coverage of Celtics-Heat, which begins Tuesday at 5:30 p.m. with Celtics Pregame Live followed by tip-off at 6:30 p.m. You can also stream the game on the MyTeams App.

Want proof? The Celtics reported no injuries ahead of Tuesday's seeding-round matchup with the Miami Heat in Orlando. That's their third consecutive contest with a clean injury sheet -- their longest no-injury streak of the season, per 98.5 The Sports Hub's Brian Robb.

Walker was on a minutes limit for Boston's first two games in the bubble (19 minutes against the Milwaukee Bucks and 22 minutes versus the Portland Trail Blazers) so the Celtics still aren't at peak operation.

But key contributors Jayson Tatum, Brown, Smart and Gordon Hayward -- in addition to big men Daniel Theis, Enes Kanter and Robert Williams -- are all available for head coach Brad Stevens, which was rarely the case during the pre-pandemic regular season.

If Walker can return to full strength by the end of the seeding round, we could see a fully-healthy C's squad in the postseason. (Yes, we just knocked on wood.) Considering they went 43-21 while battling a stream of injuries, it's no wonder why some believe the Celtics can make a deep playoff run in Orlando.