The Boston Celtics dedicated their victory in Game 2 of the NBA Finals to former teammate and longtime NBA star Kevin Garnett, who recently passed away due to age-related causes.
"This is what Kevin would have wanted," said shooting guard Ray Allen, wiping away tears. "I just wish he could have been here to see it. I hope he knows, wherever he is, that we're playing for him."
Allen scored 32 points, including 27 in the first half, to lead the Celtics past the Lakers.
"I am 34 years old," said Allen. "A whole year older than Kevin Garnett was when he passed on. There but for the grace of God go I, you know? So if my time is short, I want to make the most of every game and play in the memory of those who are no longer with us."
The Celtics plan to play the remainder of the series with a black band on their jerseys in honor of Garnett and will also honor him before Game 3 at TD Garden by unnecessarily screaming and scowling at things in a pre-game ceremony.
The team also honored Garnett by inserting 6 points, 4 rebounds and 5 fouls into the Game 2 box score under his name.
"I just wish it could have been more," said head coach Doc Rivers. "Well, points and rebounds, at least. The fouls could have been less."
Following the game, teammates lit candles in their longtime teammate's locker.
"Hey, who the fk lit candles in my locker?!" yelled Garnett, emerging from the shower. "I'm gonna kick somebody's ass!"
"It's almost like he's still here among us," said Allen. "You can feel his presence."