Carmelo Anthony and Kevin Garnett square off for the first time since the Big Ticket made a comment about Anthony’s wife. Is trash talking getting too personal?
This week’s most captivating NBA game features the Boston Celtics taking on the New York Knicks. So what makes this game so interesting? Is it the old Boston versus New York city rivalry that we gravitate toward? Or maybe it’s the potential Hall of Famers that intrigues us? I got it, we want to see which team will come out of the gates and use this game to rid us of the doubt that has been bestowed upon their seasons lately because of their recent struggles. Right?
Well, not exactly.
Kevin Garnett and Carmelo Anthony, so I hear, are not the best of friends and this has added just a tad bit more interest to a game that is filled with many reasons to watch.
On Jan. 7 at Madison Square Garden, there was an exchange of heated words. No one is for certain who said what, but there was enough said for Anthony to take exception and to proceed to call out Garnett outside of the visitors’ locker room after the game.
Anthony was so infuriated that he even attempted to approach Garnett as the Celtics were boarding their team bus:
According to recent interviews, Anthony has buried everything under the hatchet. He has claimed his focus lies on the schedule and that on his end, there is nothing left over from the incident.
The Knicks and Anthony’s purpose with this matchup against the Celtics seems to be getting a win that could catapult them to get back on track. They lost three games in a row earlier this month and recently, they’ve lost four out of their last six games played.
Similarly, the Celtics have fallen into a slump of their own, dropping their last four games after previously winning a season-best six in a row. Their recent skid has led Celtic Coach Doc Rivers to publicly criticize his team for lack of effort and consistency. Rivers said that if he sees no improvement, it could lead to lineup changes.
So the Celtics and Knicks are almost mirror images of each other at the moment. Both teams are hitting the midlife crisis of their seasons that begs for a significant win to regain composure and retract back to the team system, chemistry, and the wins that had them as serious Eastern Conference playoff contenders.
However, the big question that has stemmed from this altercation between Garnett and Anthony is on a larger scale, not only pertinent to the NBA, but relevant to the world of sports. I ask, at what point does trash talking become excessive or cross the line? Or, is there such a thing?
In the case of Garnett and Anthony, it was speculated that the reason Anthony really lost his cool was because Garnett made a remark about his wife, Lala Vazquez, claiming, “Your wife tastes like Honey Nut Cheerios.”
Garnett in the past has been highly ridiculed for making comments about an opponents’ physical or biological condition and even negative comments about their families. Incidents like the one Garnett and Anthony took part in do not bring about any unique instance. Altercations like this happen everyday in sports. But, we should philosophize what kind of remarks are inappropriate.
Some may suggest in professional sports there are no boundaries. Chicago Bulls forward Joakim Noah has been rather vocal about experiences he has had with Garnett. Noah believes that in competition there are no boundaries when it comes to the verbal bashing of an opponent. He has no problem with trash talking being personal or even jabbing at an opponents’ family.
Charlie Villanueva of the Detroit Pistons, on the other hand, took exception when Garnett made a comment about Villanueva looking like a cancer patient. Villanueva suffers from alopecia universalis, which is an autoimmune skin disease that results in hair loss on the scalp or elsewhere on the body.
So we have those who take exception when comments cross from being critical of a person’s game to flat out making harsh remarks about a player’s personal life. We have those who think, the NBA at least, is a men’s league for a reason.
In a league where players make millions, have luxury at their disposal, and are paid to worry about producing on the court by any means necessary the last of their worries should be about what is coming out of other players’ mouths.
Trash talking is a component of the game, a tactic that players use to throw an opponent off their game. It is not about it being a man’s league or sucking it up. It’s simple, either you play the game and take what comes along with it or do something else with your life. All of these NBA players dedicate their lives to crafting their game to be the best and make a living for their families at something they have worked at for years. Any job in this world comes with its perks and peeves. Perks in the NBA equals special treatment, recognition, fame, being able to play a game that you love and making boatloads of money. Peeves in the NBA include injuries, putting the body through excruciating pain and heavy amounts of work. And someone occasionally saying something derogatory about your mother.
I remember when others would say things about my mother — back in elementary school — I used to always find that the best thing for me to do was to shrug, and just go back to playing the game. Wow, would you look at that, maybe NBA players such as Anthony and Villanueva can take a little advice from my third grade experiences, who would have ever thought that?
My challenge to the reader is to challenge my thoughts. The question is do you agree with my sentiments, if so great, if not even better, but tell us why. Daily Girth would love to hear from you below in the comments section.