We are spending some time looking back over the Boston Celtics championship season… in an effort to truly appreciate the efforts of those involved. In the first three installments, we’ve appreciated Doc Rivers, Danny Ainge, and the Team Owners. We have spent recent days appreciating our key bench players, like PJ Brown, Leon Powe, Glen Davis, Eddie House, and James Posey. In our ninth installment of our series, we move on to our starters.
There are two Celtics I wouldn’t want to meet in a dark alley: Leon Powe, and Kendrick Perkins.
Perk is a bad man. He knows it. You know it. People who don’t know him, know it .5 seconds after seeing him. Look no further than the Celtics post-championship celebration for the proof.
Everyone in there was smiling bigger smiles than they’ve ever smiled before. The pictures were everywhere. I’ve seen one picture (as in ever) of Perk smiling. In the post-game celebrations, Perk had a “damn right” smirk on his face as everyone was bounding around. I felt like we were a few seconds away from him ripping peoples’ arms off in celebration.
It’s what’s Perk does. He’s the enforcer. If this was hockey, he’d be the guy that came out onto the ice to beat the snot out of the guy who just cross-checked Pierce. True, it does cause him to get into foul trouble… and he still has to learn how to back off. But I’d rather have the guy who’s too aggressive than the guy who’s too timid (am I right, Lakers fans?).
Perhaps the least appreciated aspect of Kendrick Perkins, is the effect he has on Kevin Garnett. We all know what KG means to the rest of the team, especially Perkins. But what few people outside of Celtics-nation see is that having Perk in the game seems to lift a weight off KG’s shoulders. KG can focus on guarding power forwards with the knowledge that Perk can capably protect the basket. He’s got a partner in crime on the blocks… and together, they send a simple message to other teams: You’d better hope your jumpers are ‘on’… because you ain’t coming in here.
I love what Perk did in limited time in Game 6 of the Finals. He gutted out a shoulder injury to come in and break Pau Gasol. It was beautiful to watch. No left arm necessary…. just the full brute force of The Beast… letting Pau, and everyone else, know that they were done. Perk is a young kid (he’s 23) who is only just starting to realize his potential. There is no doubt he’ll get better… and beastlier… as time goes on. We look forward to the pain you will inflict, Kendrick, and we appreciate the job you’ve done in helping us achieve the ultimate goal… an NBA title.
(Getty Images Photo)