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Report: Paul Pierce to sign two-year deal to join Wizards

Jul 13, 2014, 12:12 AM EDT

Indiana Pacers v Brooklyn Nets Getty Images

If LeBron James choosing to leave Miami and return to Cleveland was the biggest surprise of NBA free agency, this has to be a close second.

Paul Pierce is reportedly set to join the Washington Wizards.

From Marc Stein of ESPN.com:

Paul Pierce is on the verge of joining the Washington Wizards in a free-agent deal, ESPN has learned

ESPN has learned that Pierce will sign a two-year deal with the Wizards at the mid-level exception with a player option entering Year 2

This is a stunning development — not necessarily because Pierce was so attached to being in Brooklyn, but after playing the first 15 years of his career with the Boston Celtics, he’ll now be joining his second team in as many seasons.

It’s also a sign that a very expensive gamble by the Nets to become immediately relevant by trading for Pierce and Kevin Garnett failed pretty miserably, especially when considering the overall cost. Brooklyn is hamstrung in terms of its ability to rebuild traditionally because of the three first round draft picks (2014, 2016 and 2018) it gave up to complete the deal, along with giving Boston the right to swap first round picks with the Nets in 2017.

Pierce’s numbers dipped significantly with the Nets, due to a combination of playing less minutes and having a reduction in responsibility with Joe Johnson taking on the role of the team’s primary offensive option. He averaged 13.5 points, 4.6 rebounds and 2.4 assists in 28 minutes per contest, and started in 68 of his 75 regular season appearances.

The Nets reportedly had the opportunity to re-sign Pierce, but passed in part due to the fact that his deal would have cost the team north of $20 million in luxury taxes, reports Tim Bontemps of the New York Post.

The Wizards wasted little time in replacing Trevor Ariza, who agreed to a four-year, $32 million deal to join the Houston Rockets.

  1. djlexluger - Jul 13, 2014 at 7:11 AM

    Do you fools actually watch basketball or do you just watch the highlights?

    • ProBasketballPundit - Jul 13, 2014 at 4:06 PM

      Do you ever make comments with a point or do you just throw out vague insults?

  2. floreskins - Jul 13, 2014 at 7:42 AM

    I guess Otto Porter’s 25 pts in the Summer League weren’t that important afterall

    • sportsfan18 - Jul 13, 2014 at 8:40 AM

      they NEVER are in SUMMER games…

    • sportsfan18 - Jul 13, 2014 at 8:40 AM

      they NEVER are in SUMMER games…

  3. girlsknowsportstoo - Jul 13, 2014 at 8:17 AM

    Nobody can spend money and ruin a team like the Net’s GM Billy King.

    • sportsfan18 - Jul 13, 2014 at 8:42 AM

      Uh, Isiah Thomas did a GREAT job of wrecking the Knicks… along with Dolan.

      Been a sad last 15 yrs for Knicks fans due to Dolan.

  4. reupjosh - Jul 13, 2014 at 8:22 AM

    Billy King: Always making the right moves… For other teams. What a debacle.

  5. adoombray - Jul 13, 2014 at 10:11 AM

    that’s really saying something about that Brooklyn organization that Pierce would rather play for Randy Wittman than Lionel Hollins. The Truth could have done better, I would have loved to see him with the Clippers or even back with the Celtics…

  6. spillz121 - Jul 13, 2014 at 10:34 AM

    If porter stays healthy he’ll have a bigger role this year, so pierce’s age shouldn’t be that much of a concern.

  7. m4a188 - Jul 13, 2014 at 10:56 AM

    Poor KG, stuck on one of the terrible New York teams hahaha

  8. realfootballfan - Jul 13, 2014 at 11:15 AM

    To join who? What the?

  9. cueghost - Jul 13, 2014 at 12:28 PM

    This is NICE for the Wizards. His experience paired up with the youth they have is going to be fun to watch… And I know it’s a weak league, but, this is a team that could play for the Eastern Conference Championship.

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