Many many years ago, Ray Allen, Paul Pierce, Kevin Garnett, and Rajon Rondo were coworkers in Boston. Doc Rivers was their coach. They won the 2008 NBA championship together; then, later, some of them went on to work in other places. Some of them don’t really like each other. They don’t all come to each others’ life events and work functions anymore, a decade after they won that championship and a full six years after the last time all of them were coworkers.
Absolutely nothing about this is the least bit interesting or unusual, so far. Do you still hang out with all the people with whom you shared a professional context six years ago? Do you go through life with the expectation that you will be close personal friends with all of your former coworkers more than six fucking years after you stop working together? Do you expect other people—people who don’t know any of you!—to give a shit about the fact that some of your former coworkers are not friends anymore? Hell no you do not! Because you are not what the youths call a messy bitch. Because you are not a Boston Celtic.
Unfortunately, the 2008 champion Boston Celtics are Boston Celtics. Or, more pertinently, they were Boston Celtics, though at least a few of them now appear to struggle with the concept of the past tense and the passage of time. They’ve got whatever virulent brain disease makes everyone even vaguely associated with the city of Boston believe that anything done or experienced or said or thought by anyone even vaguely associated with the city of Boston automatically qualifies as something everyone else must know about and care about. Like the 2008 NBA Champion Boston Celtics are a public trust or some shit.
And so here we are, in 2018, with Ray Allen on the cusp of induction to the Basketball Hall of Fame and Doc Rivers—only one of several coaches Allen played for, in one of the four different cities where he worked as an NBA player—giving quotes to ESPN about how sad it makes him that Ray Allen isn’t pals with Kevin Garnett and Rajon Rondo anymore. About how it grieves him to know he hasn’t been able to mend fences between them.
“I’ve tried, I can tell you that,” Rivers said. “It’s a lot of little things. Here’s the thing: You have two Hall of Fame guys as far as their competitiveness. The reason that Ray was who he is, Rondo was who he is, Kevin, Paul — I think Paul has done the right thing as far as throwing out the olive branch. [But] it’s also why we were really good is why they don’t get along: very stubborn, very tough, very competitive and no one wants to give in.
I’m sick of this shit! This is the sixth straight year that some number of members of that historically unremarkable one-time championship squad have taken to the national media to treat the fact that they’re not all BFFs anymore like it’s the fucking War of the Roses! It is time to get over it! There is nothing special about not remaining on great terms with the shitbrains you worked with a long time ago!
Nobody gives a fuck whether the members of the 2011 champion Dallas Mavericks still go bowling together. A handful of years from now, when Dirk Nowitzki enters the Hall of Fame, nobody anywhere will be fretting over whether fucking Rodrigue Beaubois will show up to the induction ceremony. When they retire Dirk’s jersey in Dallas, nobody will be scanning the fucking stands to see whether Jason Terry is there, or getting mad if he’s not, or reuniting the rest of the 2011 Mavs on national television to air out their diaper rash over the fact that Tyson Chandler dared to break up the team and go play for the Knicks. More to the point, if anybody did, nobody else would want to fucking hear about it. “Ew, gross, this is pathetic and embarrassing, quit it” is what everyone would say if Caron Butler decided to start heavy-breathing about The Bond Between Warriors or whatever-the-fuck cringe-inducing warmed-over Frank Miller–ass bullshit Kevin Garnett gets up to whenever anybody makes the mistake of aiming a microphone at him.
Hear me, balding has-beens and the very many weirdos who persist in paying attention to them, now and for all time! There was nothing magical or special about the 2008 Boston Celtics. They were not Leonidas and his brave Spartans. They were just a very good team that won a championship. A very good team wins a championship every summer. That’s how literally every NBA season has ended: With a very good team winning a championship. It is of no importance to anyone, anywhere—not to the members of that team or to anyone else—that whatever transient interpersonal harmony combined with good fortune to deliver that one team its single title be preserved forever.
It is okay, and in fact actively good, for former coworkers to stop pretending you have and must honor some sacred tribal blood-oath to each other. You were just doofuses who worked together for a little while, and then didn’t. I used to work with Kevin Draper, and now I don’t, and he can eat my shit for all I care!