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Doc Rivers says Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett have plenty left to give to the Nets

Jul 28, 2013, 9:30 AM EDT

Paul Pierce, Kevin Garnett AP

When the Celtics pulled the plug on their championship aspirations by trading Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett to the Nets, it wasn’t because those two Hall of Fame players were completely finished.

Salary considerations — along with the reality that even if the core stars were kept together in Boston for one more season, it still wouldn’t have been enough to get out of the Eastern Conference — were among the deciding factors in the team deciding to begin the rebuilding process sooner rather than later.

Pierce and Garnett can both still play at a high level, and that’s what the Nets were banking on when they agreed to take on the payroll and somewhat ridiculous luxury tax bill that it will be paying with those two in the fold next season.

Former Celtics head coach Doc Rivers believes it was a wise investment.

From Gary Washburn of the Boston Globe:

“I think obviously Paul’s younger and in tune to play more minutes than Kevin,” Rivers said. “But I think they’re still at the top of their games. I think Paul is still one of those guys who can go off for big nights and still have big scoring nights. Kevin is a culture change. He won’t play but 20 to 25 minutes a night and there’ll probably be nights when he doesn’t play but his presence there alone will absolutely change the culture of Brooklyn. There’s no doubt about it. I think for some of the young guys, even some of the veteran stars, Joe Johnson and Deron Williams, will learn and understand what a winner is and looks like and professionalism and being prepared.

“That’s what I was most impressed with Kevin, how every game he prepared himself for games. That’s what I told our young guys that I just wanted them to watch him prepare for games. It was why he was so consistent. I thought it was that important.”

The example Pierce and Garnett will set for the rest of the Nets form a professional standpoint while having the experience of winning a championship to draw from will be an invaluable contribution to the franchise.

Rivers is obviously coming from a place of great bias when talking up two of his former players, but he’s not wrong, either. Pierce and Garnett do still have plenty to contribute, and should make the Nets a very interesting team to watch next season.

  1. lebronhair23 - Jul 28, 2013 at 10:22 AM

    Brokelyn

  2. rodge1 - Jul 28, 2013 at 10:30 AM

    Rivers would be right if it was 2009…

    • dirtydavis - Jul 28, 2013 at 10:58 AM

      Lol..

      In 2012 Celtics should have traded rondo and ray Allen for a superstar

      • idywild - Jul 28, 2013 at 11:09 AM

        lol, pierce and kg were done by 2012. No longer good or effective as 1st and 2nd options. Rondo was by far their best player that season. Did you even watch the 2012 playoffs. Ainge made the right decision in trading away those two. He should have done so after the 2010- 2011 season.

      • fanofevilempire - Jul 28, 2013 at 1:41 PM

        yeah, because people just trade their superstars when Boston calls, they are not the Lakers you know.

      • arrondior - Jul 29, 2013 at 8:53 PM

        Honestly, I think the writing is on the wall for Rondo too in Boston. He should be healthy before the trade deadline. I expect to see him traded to a team that can actually use him for picks and maybe a bad contract or two.

  3. jacobknicks - Jul 28, 2013 at 10:49 AM

    If Doc really felt that he’d still be coaching the C’s

    • dirtydavis - Jul 28, 2013 at 10:56 AM

      Doc would be coaching the celtics if Danny Aige would have agreed to bring back P.Pierce

  4. cbrown386 - Jul 28, 2013 at 10:50 AM

    If guys like Lopez and Blatche can even bring 50% of the intensity that KG brings, he’ll be worth every penny that they give him.

    • fanofevilempire - Jul 28, 2013 at 1:43 PM

      so they have to be 150% and Garnett and Pierce will play @ 50%
      so that will be 100% when there out put is combined?

  5. onlyavoice - Jul 28, 2013 at 10:57 AM

    Duhhhh,
    Any Fool Can Figure That Out Doc.
    If Rondo Wasn’t Hurt Last Season The Celts Would Have Gone A Lot Further.
    KG & Pierce Makes The Nets Legit Contenders. (Only If D.Will Can Handle The Pressure & Also Knows That It’s Himself Playing & Not His Alter)
    Kidd Being A 1st Year Coach Will Do Fine, He Knows The Game. He Also Has Frank To Implement The Thibs Defense He Ran In Boston.
    This Team (If They All Buy In & Are Healthy) Will Be The Favorite By Feb. To Win It All.

    • dirtydavis - Jul 28, 2013 at 11:06 AM

      Agreed.

  6. timothysykesdick - Jul 28, 2013 at 12:01 PM

    That’s like saying my grandma can run the 100 meter dash. Doc is one jokester. The Nets will suck.

  7. 00maltliquor - Jul 28, 2013 at 12:08 PM

    Total non-story. File this in between “of course he’s gonna say that” and “yeah, we know that already”. It’s been a very slow last 3 days…

    • jimeejohnson - Jul 28, 2013 at 12:26 PM

      Not if you’ve got malt liquor!

  8. drubeatz - Jul 28, 2013 at 1:28 PM

    if they play as a team and stay away from isolation this should work. keep the ball moving. kidd needs to make the rotation work. good luck.

  9. jcmeyer10 - Jul 28, 2013 at 5:57 PM

    This is going to go very well or horribly wrong. I can see there being the same issues the Heat had first year. Who gets the ball at the end of close games?

    I’ve seen Garnett and Pierce have ice water in their veins down the stretch but DWill and JoJo ain’t giving that ball up easy.

  10. kanemoney - Jul 28, 2013 at 10:27 PM

    Doc is a classy dude.

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