In the past three seasons, Garnett has played no more than the 2,328 he logged in his first year in Boston. Celtics coach Doc Rivers has been able to hold Garnett to 30.0 minutes a night this season. But it wasn't easy.
"He was pretty good [about it]," Rivers said. "He's never liked it. He didn't like it last year when we cut his minutes down and he liked it less this year because they were even lower minutes. But he deals with it. He understands. He almost has a self talk every time he comes out. You can almost see him gather himself. But it was the right thing to do because we need him in the playoffs. Now, he won't have that concern once the playoffs start."
Asked if the 40,000-minute mark was a badge of honor, Rivers said it's probably one most players would bypass.
"I guess it's good for the player, because it means he's at 40,000," Rivers said. "But fastest to it would not be the way you want to get to it. That means you're probably playing too many minutes.
He joked, "Blame Flip!"