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Video: Emotional exit for Boston’s Big Three from Game 7

Jun 10, 2012, 1:45 AM EDT

We don’t know what the future will hold, but there’s a good chance that Boston’s Big Three (or Core Four or whatever other nickname you have for them) will not be back together next year. Ray Allen and Kevin Garnett are free agents, and their futures with the team are uncertain.

So it was an emotional end when, with the game out of reach and 25 seconds remaining, Doc Rivers pulled Paul Pierce, Garnett and Allen off the floor. You could tell how they were feeling. This can’t be easy (especially since they led or were deep in the mix of this game for three and a half quarters).

If this is the end, they will be missed. This group played some old-time basketball — they defended hard, they moved the ball, they were not afraid to mix it up but could bring you the sublime and beautiful ball movement that would make any coach proud. The NBA was better for having them join forces

  1. storebrandcookies - Jun 10, 2012 at 2:05 AM

    Sad to see them come up short but you got to hand it to them. Whether its been a slow start to the season, hearing trade rumors, or playing through injuries, these men fought hard till the end.

    One championship in a five-year span with a core that was on the back end of there prime should be a great feeling for ya’ll Celtic fans.

    Before there was LeBron, Wade, and Bosh; There was Pierce, Garnett and Allen.

    • progress2011 - Jun 10, 2012 at 4:03 AM

      Before there was Garnett, Allen and Pierce…..There was Bird, McHale and Ainge !

      In comparison to Bostons that “Big 3” , Garnett, Allen and Pierce are mediocre AT BEST !
      Their run will be only a blip, on the history of Boston B-Ball !

      Don’t over-dramatize what they have done…especially in Boston !

      • diabloryno - Jun 10, 2012 at 9:57 AM

        Umm…Ok. Sounds like they were giving credit where credit is due…

      • drewzducks - Jun 10, 2012 at 2:11 PM

        Bird, McHale and Ainge ? Was that the lesser heralded Big 2 1/2 ?

      • duane888 - Jun 11, 2012 at 1:17 AM

        Actually, they used to say “Bird, McHale and Parrish”

      • progress2011 - Jun 11, 2012 at 11:10 AM

        I don’t have a dog in the fight…cause I really dislike everything about boston (the accents,the nasty dirty city and of course the bigots).

        But, my recolection was, Parrish was broken down, could barely walk. He was part of the Big 3, kinda like Garnett is a Big 3 player. Only in theory.

        Ainge, provided grit, hard-nosed tenacity that often spark plugged their runs. Dude was a BALLER !!!

        So you boston fans can call it what you like…it’s kinda irrelevant, like your current fake big 3.

  2. livingsacrifice86 - Jun 10, 2012 at 2:47 AM

    Not really a fan of Garnett or Pierce’s attitude/personality, but those old men can straight up ball. I think Allen might have the most years in him out of the three if he can get healthy and I enjoy the way he plays. It was a good run

    • borderline1988 - Jun 10, 2012 at 10:10 AM

      I think Garnett plays the most. He can still defend the pick & roll as well as anybody in the league, and can still hit the jumper. Any team could use that. Even among playoff teams, there are very few teams for whch Garnett wouldn’t be an upgrade at the 4 or 5 position in the short run.

      Pierce in my opinion will be the quickest to go. He still hits some big shots and can score 25 points once in a while, but he can’t keep up with the faster, more athletic wing players. He is a defensive liability, which is why he’s so often in foul trouble. Unless he’s consistently scoring an efficient 20 points a game (which he is not), he shouldn’t be a starter on a playoff team b/c of his lack of defense.

      Allen, if healthy, can also play a few more seasons, but he’s also slowing down on the defensive end. He’s more likely to come off the bench on a contending team, but the question is whether he’s still motivated to play like that. My guess is that he plays off the bench next season and then retires to be with his family.

      • scalfor3 - Jun 10, 2012 at 11:40 AM

        pierce is actually a pretty good defensive player. lebron is just a really tough to guard, especially when playing through a knee injury. who knew?!?

      • borderline1988 - Jun 10, 2012 at 7:40 PM

        I was never huge on Pierce’s defense. It was always terrible until Garnett arrived in 2008. But even after that, the success of Boston’s defense was more about Kevin Garnett.

        Boston’s defense was orchestrated by Thibodeau and mostly utilized Garnett and Rondo, perhaps the 2 premier defenders in the league at their positions. They are what makes Boston’s defense work. Allen and Pierce bought into the system, but they themselves are only average individual defenders (at best).

        You saw what happened in this series…whenever Garnett was on the bench, Miami would make a run. And when Bosh returned to form, forcing Garnett out of the post, suddenly Wade and Lebron had avenues to the basket all night long.

  3. passerby23 - Jun 10, 2012 at 3:11 AM

    You know we’re all going to hear that it’s their swan song….again. But, I think if you can re-sign Garnett and Allen for the right price, these guys have another run in them. They were supposedly washed up last year and had a better showing this year with a depleted team. Jeff Green, done for the year. Chris Wilcox, done for the year. Avery Bradley, done for the year. Ray Allen, gimpy ankle. Paul Pierce, gimpy knee.

    If Green and Bradley can come back healthy, maybe another another big in free agency, and draft well, this team can do it again. You just wonder if KG is going to call it a career, or whether they can afford to keep these guys around for one more run.

  4. patsfiend - Jun 10, 2012 at 11:31 AM

    It’s been a great run. I hope they work something out with Garnett for a couple of years. Damn they were close to getting past Miami.

    • knightrider1755 - Jun 11, 2012 at 1:15 PM

      Close only counts in horseshoes and miscarriages.

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