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Should we believe Kevin Garnett trade rumors?

02.06.13 at 3:04 pm ET

By now, you’ve heard the absurd Kevin Garnett trade rumors.

The Clippers inquired about him, or so Sporting News reporter Sean Deveney‘s sources said.

Or maybe the Clippers and Celtics never had that conversation, as ESPN, FOX Sports West and the Los Angeles Times reported. And maybe a reporter from who uses the Twitter handle @Powell2daPeople knows the inner desires of Garnett, one of the most guarded NBA superstars you’ll ever find.

Ok, so first the Celtics must trade Paul Pierce, and then Garnett will waive his no-trade clause for a deal that’s never been discussed? Got it. Actually, wait, what about Denver? Does KG want to play for the Nuggets in another trade that’s never been mentioned? Not according to The Denver Post’s Mark Kiszla: “Through his representatives, Garnett has let it be known he has no current interest in the Nuggets.”

The question everyone should be asking: Which teams would want Kevin Garnett?

The obvious answer: Anyone convinced he’ll make them an NBA championship contender this season. No matter how much KG changes the culture of a team, as he did in Boston, general managers don’t want 36-year-olds with two-plus years and $30 million left on their contracts unless he gives them a legit chance at a title in that window. Regardless, Garnett wouldn’t waive his no-trade clause to play for a middling team.

Garnett’s contract also makes it difficult for GMs to construct packages of players, salaries and picks that simultaneously wouldn’t detract from their current roster and would entice Celtics president Danny Ainge to consider asking the heart and soul of his franchise to waive his no-trade clause.

Take the Nuggets, for example. As The Post’s Kiszla notes, any deal for Garnett would have to start with Andre Iguodola, Kenneth Faried or Danilo Gallinari. If you subtract any of those players from their roster and add Garnett, does a team that hasn’t emerged from the first round of the playoffs since Carmelo Anthony‘s departure challenge the Thunder in the Western Conference?

Or take the Clippers. Forget Eric Bledsoe and Caron Butler, because Ainge isn’t picking up the phone for that trade, but Bledsoe and DeAndre Jordan? Now, he’s listening. But why would Clippers GM Gary Sacks deal his 24-year-old starting center and the only healthy point guard on his roster, who also happens to be an insurance policy should Chris Paul choose not to re-sign this summer? A team led by a healthy Paul, Garnett and Blake Griffin absolutely contends for a title this season, but a team built around Paul, Griffin, Jordan and whatever they can land for Bledsoe in the offseason puts the Clippers in the championship conversation for the next five years.

Name me a team that has enough expendable young talent and $13 million in desirable salary that could challenge the Thunder or Heat for the title this season by adding Garnett. Until then, I’ll believe these rumors when I see KG wearing anything but green and white.

Read More: Boston Celtics, Danny Ainge, Kevin Garnett, NBA
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