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Report: People close to Paul Pierce think Celtics don’t bring him back

May 14, 2013, 8:40 AM EDT

The video above from Sunday on Comcast Sportsnet New England, it is CSNNE’s Boston Celtics sideline reporter Greg Dickerson debating what a lot of Celtics fans are debating right now: Tear it down now or bring Paul Pierce, Kevin Garnett and the rest of the band back for one more year. The Celtics have until June 30 to buy out Pierce’s $15 million contract for next season for $5 million, that will be the first domino.

During the interview Dickerson said something interesting: The people around Pierce — and likely Pierce himself — don’t expect to be back.

“… I know that the company that Paul Pierce hangs around in, they do not believe – and I don’t think Paul Pierce believes – that he is going to be brought back next year at $15 million. I know for a fact that people around Paul Pierce have pretty much resigned themselves to the fact that he’s played his final game in a Boston Celtics uniform. Again, Paul wants to stay – obviously for $15 million — but he wants to finish his career in a Celtics uniform…. Probably a buyout (rather than a trade)…

“(Garnett) doesn’t want to be around for a rebuilding phase for another year. If Paul’s gone, I think without a doubt Kevin Garnett is gone, either by retirement or he finally decides to waive his no-trade clause, and the Celtics maybe work something out with a Clippers team. But the list is real short. The teams that Kevin Garnett would go to, there might be two of them on it, and they both might be the Clippers and Lakers.”

Dickerson shoots down the idea that Doc Rivers will leave to coach another team next year.

For the record, Dickerson says he thinks the Celtics should bring everyone back for one more run, even if they are not going to win a title. As Dickerson notes, tearing it down does mean you start the rebuilding process earlier but with Rajon Rondo, Jeff Green and others still in the fold they are not going to be one of the three or four worst teams in the NBA. Without blowing the entire thing up (including trading Rondo and Green) they are not going to have a real shot at Andrew Wiggins, Julius Randle or the other elite guys expected in the 2014 NBA Draft. Boston would struggle to become bad enough fast enough.

And if you can’t be that bad, why not bring KG and Pierce back and be an interesting five seed?

But it doesn’t feel like that is the direction things are heading in Boston.

  1. hehateme2 - May 14, 2013 at 8:50 AM

    Tear it down… they’ve become a laughingstock!

    • andyhr17 - May 14, 2013 at 2:06 PM

      Your definition of a “laughingstock” is an above .500 record and making the playoffs? You’re an idiot.

      • ghelton03 - May 15, 2013 at 12:43 AM

        The bar has been set way too low. First of all any team below .500 should not be in the playoffs (ie: Bucks). Only reason C’s made the playoffs is because the east is soooo weak. C’s only victory was to move from 8th to 7th in a pathetic division.

  2. nard100 - May 14, 2013 at 9:01 AM

    The way he was throwing that shoulder around this year, I think Paul has a future as a linebacker in the NFL.

  3. Cortonio - May 14, 2013 at 9:10 AM

    Why even bother keep it together? On the other hand it would behoove them to remain at least competitive.
    1) The celtics over the last 5 years have been enjoying success not seen since the 80’s, 20+ years in the NBA is an eternity. Not to mention the fact they’ve made money hand over fist for themselves and the NBA. If you tear it down you’ll revert back to the 90’s and part of this millenium with 1/3 empty arenas, no money, no marketbale stars and for a storied franchise you wouldn’t want that. From 1994-2001 they made the playoffs ONCE and lived in the lottery. All they got out of it was Paul Pierce and Antoine Walker and Walker is no longer here and missing out Duncan in ’97. In 2007 they finished with the worst record in the NBA and had to pick as low as #5. (Luckily danny spun everything around and the new big 3 was born) So again,why go through the lottery? We’re not a desireable location for free agents either. You’d want to at least be competitive enough to hang around until something happens.

  4. saint1997 - May 14, 2013 at 9:11 AM

    I disagree with your assessment on the 2014 class. That class had elite All-Star talent prospects to around 13th pick, I think a Rondo – Bradley – Green core could be around 10th pick in the draft, choose a Small Forward like Mario Hezonja out of Croatia and then try and get a young centre for KG or PP (maybe Clippers will give up Deandre?). Sorry btw im a major draft geek

  5. erckle31 - May 14, 2013 at 9:16 AM

    Even as a Laker fan myself, Paul Pierce deserves to reitre as a Celtic.

  6. packhawk04 - May 14, 2013 at 10:40 AM

    Time to blow it up. KG and Pierce both probably should retire if they want to retire as celtics.

  7. davidly - May 14, 2013 at 12:12 PM

    Kurt, tell your editors to quit with the faux conditional; it makes sports journalists look like idiots.

    I realize that usage dictates language development, and I usually sympathize with that side of the argument; but the headline ‘People close to Paul Pierce think Celtics don’t bring him back’ not only doesn’t sound sports-hip, it is plain dips**ttery.

    “won’t” not “don’t”

  8. savagedolfan - May 14, 2013 at 12:53 PM

    Maybe the Heat will take them in………..Well only if they’ll hold Ray Allen’s jock strap after that crap they did to him on national television…

  9. halfbaht - May 14, 2013 at 5:06 PM

    I’ve been a celtics fan for over 20 years and it doesn’t make any sense to me to blow this team up. We’re a team built on tradition, pride and respect, so why would we disrespect one of our all time greats in Paul Pierce by not bringing him back and letting him retire in the clover green. Paul stuck by us in the lean years and now it’s time to return the favour. He’s the best Celtic since the days of Larry Legend. He deserves to be treated like such. KG and The Truth for one more run. We already have the foundations for the future in Rondo, Sullinger, Bradley and Green.

  10. glink123 - May 14, 2013 at 6:19 PM

    Chicago will take The Truth with open arms. One phone call.

  11. ghelton03 - May 14, 2013 at 11:08 PM

    Players, fans and front office chastised Ray Allen for leaving, saying he had no loyalty. Fans booed him and said they were better off without him. A year later C’s are ready to cut a player who has never played for any other team and who’s jersey will someday hang in C’s rafters. Will fans boo the C’s organization for lack of loyalty? NO! Loyalty only works one way in the NBA.

  12. ghelton03 - May 14, 2013 at 11:39 PM

    If Ainge’s ego wasn’t so big, the first player they would look at dumping is Green. Bad deal from the start. Bad re-sign. Stop digging your grave and cut your losses. Granted, they have been monumentally stupid.

  13. bknowledge - May 15, 2013 at 12:13 AM

    Hoping to see KG on Golden State next year…a deal centered around a swap for him and David Lee…


    That’s the best starting 5 in the league?
    I’d like to see KG get another ring before he retires…

  14. ghelton03 - May 15, 2013 at 12:28 AM

    I have been a C’s fan for more than 40 years, but have never felt so disengaged from this team. Loved Ainge as a player, but think he is the worst thing that has ever happened to the C’s.

  15. ghelton03 - May 15, 2013 at 12:30 AM

    Doc needs to go to. Why would you tell Ray Allen that he has been demoted to a backup role after playing through bone spurs and being the most consistent player on the team?

  16. ghelton03 - May 15, 2013 at 12:34 AM

    Rebuilding for the C’s starts at the top. Get rid of Ainge and Rivers and let the next generation rebuild the C’s.

  17. tyler1727 - May 15, 2013 at 10:44 AM

    I agree with you about ainge but doc is a good coach

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