Every NBA squad has its own specific ways of doing some things internally within the team. Teams have various rituals that, at first, may sound peculiar, but they are in place for a reason. It was the same for the Boston Celtics championship team that featured Kevin Garnett, Paul Pierce, and Ray Allen. In a recent interview for Not a Sports Show, Paul Pierce talked about the tradition Kevin Garnett brought from Minessota when joining the Celtics in 2007. Everyone had to eat peanut butter and jelly sandwiches and drink hot chocolate right before the games.
Our whole team did that. It was like a tradition that KG brought. Everybody ate peanut butter and jelly sandwiches right before the game.Paul Pierce, via Not A Sports Show
Even though that may sound like a meal that isn’t suitable for professional athletes, you would be right to a certain degree. However, Pierce argues it was actually a great idea because every player liked peanut butter and jelly growing up. It contains beneficial carbs, which are an excellent choice before a challenging physical activity, so it was an idea that immediately made sense to everyone, and everyone adopted it quickly.
Some guys ate pasta, and you need to eat some type of carbs before the game just so you have something to burn and use energy. So when he brought peanut butter and jelly sandwiches, who didn’t like peanut butter and jelly growing up, so everybody gravitated toward it. It would be raw peanut butter sandwiches covering the entire table. So it would be peanut butter and jelly sandwich and a hot chocolate before every game.Paul Pierce, via Not A Sports Show
Garnett did a good thing when implementing that tradition before the game because the Celtics went on to win a championship in his first year there, beating the Lakers in 2008. They would be a legitimate championship contender and one of the best teams in the NBA for a few years. The peanut butter jelly sandwiches with hot chocolate were obviously a small but essential step during that process and a good way for players to bond and create chemistry before games.