LeBron James Recalls Being Inspired By Kevin Garnett When He was Just A 10-Year-Old Kid

09.24.16 2 years ago 2 Comments

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I mean where do I start. First watching you play at the Solon Cage Classic in Ohio with Team Michigan when u were in HS, I believe I was 10 years old and I was like dang this dude nice!! Then a lil time passed and u were drafted straight out of HS to the pros so I felt like man whoever get him is a lucky team. And I surely wasn't wrong! The KID nickname was fly, swaged out and made a 10 year old kid from Akron believe he could run with the big boys himself! Fast forward 8 years later that kid you inspired entered the draft fresh out of HS as well. Thank you!! Competing vs you in whatever uniform u were in at the time meant the world to me because of two distinctive trait u had. Passion and commitment to just compete every single possession. U showed me what it took and we never played on the same team(All-Star games is different). Thank you! Congratulations to The Big Ticket on a helluva career! HOF is your next stop to cap it all off, the cherry on top!! 1 Love

A post shared by LeBron James (@kingjames) on

LeBron James and Kevin Garnett are members of a fraternity that isn’t currently accepting new members. Garnett jumped from high school to the NBA in 1995 and, shortly after James did the same in 2003, the NBA instituted the “one and done” rule effectively stopping the practice from continuing. With Garnett and James representing two-thirds of the trio (along with Kobe Bryant) most famous for making the jump, it came as no surprise that LeBron reached out publicly to praise Garnett on the day of his official retirement.

The full Instagram post from James can be viewed above, but of particular note was the section concerning Garnett’s inspiration to a 10-year-old LeBron.

First watching you play at the Solon Cage Classic in Ohio with Team Michigan when u were in HS, I believe I was 10 years old and I was like dang this dude nice!!

The KID nickname was fly, swaged out and made a 10 year old kid from Akron believe he could run with the big boys himself!

James went on to boast about Garnett’s impact despite the two players never appearing on the same NBA team, and it certainly speaks to Garnett’s overall impact on the league. While there has been some debate about his ultimate legacy, James is seen as one of the best players in the history of the NBA, and Garnett’s ability to rub off on an entire generation of NBA fans and current players is noteworthy on a number of levels.

Karl-Anthony Towns received the benefit of direct exposure to Kevin Garnett and it looks like the impact was very real, but for LeBron James, it came from afar. Fortunately, it seems as if Garnett was still able to set the tone and inspire one of the game’s greats.

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