Do We Retire Kevin Garnett's and Ray Allen's Numbers?

When an article contains the three words “by Adam Goodman” beneath its title, one can safely assume the contents will include an aura of “my opinion is fact” laced between the lines.   But hell, if I didn’t think I was correct in all aspects of the topic, why in the world would I want to write about it?
What the hell are you getting at?

The point is, the issue on sending KG’s and Ray Allen’s numbers to the rafters is a debate that even a sharp-shooter such as myself is too timid to take a stance on.  Currently, as all marginally aware Celtics fans know, the Celtics hang 17 championship banners from the rafters, and allow 19 retired numbers of former players to grace the TD Garden’s  ceiling.  Only two of the retired numbers belong to players who were not on championship teams, one belonging to Reggie Lewis (memorial to his tragic passing during an off-season practice) and the other to Ed McCauley (traded for Bill Russell, basically paved the way towards 11 NBA championships).  While Garnett and Allen each have one Celtic championship respectively, each of the remaining 17 players played on at least two championship teams and spent 7 or more seasons in a Boston uniform.


The Boston Celtics have been anything but stingy when it comes to retiring numbers.  While many franchises only retire the numbers of players synonymous with their teams and cities, Boston has taken pride in how the city and franchise uniquely touches its basketball players.  “Once a Celtic, always a Celtic” is a cliche Bostonians love to use in description of their favorite short-tenured player.  Kevin Garnett and Ray Allen undoubtedly changed the face of the Celtics franchise in the 21st Century.  Although obviously this feat couldn’t have been done without a certain number 34 and a crafty general manager, turning a 24-win team into a champion over the course of a year is an accomplishment that will forever stand alone in the storied history of the Boston Celtics.

There’s a very good chance this Celtics team has had its last chance at an NBA championship.  Retiring the numbers of Garnett and Allen is the ultimate honor to bestow upon them, but even if not, the two men will have a permanent star in the timeline of Celtics history.  The argument is valid on both side of the debate, so you decide.

Do Kevin Garnett and Ray Allen deserve to have their numbers hanging from the TD Garden’s rafters?

P.S. If it were up to me, Perk’s number would be retired.  [Never43Forget]

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Hunter Thomas
As a lifetime New England sports fan, Hunter was determined in October of 2005 to finally start using that passion and determination to create the site now known as Celtics 24/7. Formerly known as Celtics Pride, Celtics 24/7 has become one of the most well-respected and followed Celtics websites. Our motto “For Fans, By Fans” rings entirely true as we’ve built and grown a community of passionate and enthusiastic Celtics fans. It all starts with you–the fans, and I appreciate every single person who supports us on our journey to the top.


  1. John

    September 2, 2011 at 10:37 am

    How about waiting until they retire before even starting this debate….

  2. Mike

    August 13, 2011 at 3:45 pm

    Of Course They might have peaked But regardless KG and the 3-point king both deserve their numbers retired!!!!…and maybe they have to many greats to compare with but 2007-08 would have never happened without Ray and Kevin….We know Paul’s number is gonna be retired and soon Rondo’s will be too….they already retired 19 numbers might as well make it 23….because you cant tell me that everyone knows who know all the 19 numbers retired besides Russell, Bird, Cousy, and Lewis im pretty sure Ray And KG are gonna be remembered more then some retired numbers of the Celtics.

  3. Pingback: Boston Celtics Daily Links 7/26 | NBA News Report

  4. Jamie Canu

    July 26, 2011 at 5:35 am

    Celts fan through and through Sean. But if the Boston Celtics were in the business of retiring every notable player that wore green we would have 7 numbers left to give out: 186, 298, 12, 104, 78, 100, 131, 155, 124, 111, 45, and 175.

    Boston has too many greats to retire them all, not only that, when you retire someone that does not deserve it you lessen that of everyone that does.

    That said, I did not say I would not retire PP, I said, “I would almost go so far as to say Pierce is even boarderline, but he led this club through thick and thin and he has earned the right to hang with just one ring(so far).”

    PP should be retired, but are you telling me that without the 2007-08 Finals season you are retiring 34?

  5. tjc

    July 25, 2011 at 8:41 pm

    If they can some how raise another championship banner together I think its a no brainer!

    But if they don’t I’m 50/50

  6. Adam Goodman

    July 25, 2011 at 7:38 pm

    Look out, Jamie, he’s blown your cover!

    Ha ha, but in all seriousness, Jamie makes a completely valid arguments based on the criteria of retired Celtics numbers, so no mud-slinging is necessary.

  7. sean

    July 25, 2011 at 7:34 pm

    Your argument became invalid when you said pierce is borderline… Your definitely a heat fan…

  8. Jamie Canu

    July 25, 2011 at 7:16 pm

    My first question is… WHy is Perk the title image? LOL

    But to answer your question, I absolutely would not. i thank KG and Ray for their service, but they peaked before Boston and were hired guns to win a title.

    If this was a different franchise… then maybe. But this is Boston, how do you put them in the same category as Bird, Russell, and the names from dynasties throughout the Celtics history.

    I would almost go so far as to say Pierce is even boarderline, but he led this club through thick and thin and he has earned the right to hang with just one ring(so far).

    Even in the outside chance that Boston wins 2 more before they go, I still don’t put them in the rafters.

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