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Kevin Garnett addresses WNBA rivalry, giving women athletes a platform

Check out what NBA star Kevin Garnett, had to say on why tonight he will have all woman on his panel during Area 21 during NBA on TNT.

NBA: Minnesota Timberwolves at New Orleans Pelicans Derick E. Hingle-USA TODAY Sports

Later tonight during NBA on TNT, Kevin Garnett will be having special guest Lindsay Whalen, Sue Bird, Cynthia Cooper-Dyke and Ros Gold-Onwude on his show Area 21. In a recent interview with For the Win, Garnett broke down why it is important for him to have all woman as his special guest and his thoughts on the Los Angeles Sparks and Minnesota Lynx rivalry.

Tonight will not be the first time Garnett has had a woman on his show, as Candace Parker has appeared on it more than once. However, this will be the first-time all his guest are women, which he voiced is because he believes more women athletes need to be given the stage to speak and recognized for their accomplishments.

“I actually promote women’s sports and want more to be brought to the table or more awareness of (them). I think as a society we don’t really celebrate women’s sports the way that we do the men’s. I would just hope to bring a platform to where we all have a voice where we can speak not just about sports but about social issues. And that’s all.

During the NBA year, we get lost in so many headlines and storylines that we forget there was a WNBA champion. There was a WNBA MVP. This was one of the highest-rating years for the women in basketball. And just women’s sports in general: Soccer, volleyball, stickball.

I thought it was important to have a night where it’s just predicated toward the women. Candace is always on me about having more shows that’s about just the girls and giving them a voice and giving them a voice to have a bigger platform and come on and have some fun. I encourage anyone that’s an influencer who has time in their busy schedule to come on the show. But tonight, it’s specifically for the women and we’re going to have a great night.”

He also went on to address the new rivalry between the Minnesota Lynx and the Los Angeles Sparks. Back in 1995, Garnett was drafted to the Minnesota Timberwolves, so it is no surprise he is a fan of the Lynx, his former NBA’s sister team which was founded in 1998.

“Huge fan. I’ve been a Lynx fan since day one. I bought season tickets the first three years and always stayed the task and always stayed loyal to them. Those are my girls.”

During the WNBA Finals, the rivalry between the Lynx and Sparks was often addressed and for Garnett, it is more than a like of watching the two teams battle on the court.

“I love it. It’s a new rivalry. What I love about it is that both sides have won. Usually you know we see these rivalries and one side is winning all the time but there’s hope for the other side. This is always a pretty balanced match and it doesn’t matter what both teams are doing during the course of the season, these teams always find a way to meet up. I love the basketball, I love the drama. I think it’s great.”

He even said he typically cheers for Parker – except when she plays against his beloved Lynx.

“First of all, Candace and I are friends from our Boston days. I never let that come in between anything. I’m very very candid with Candace. She knows where my loyalty lies. I root for her except when it comes to the Lynx but I think the basketball is beautiful.”

Make sure to tune into NBA on TNT tonight at 8 pm ET to catch Garnett on set with Whalen, Bird, Cooper-Dyke, and Gold-Onwude.