Opinion: Celtics should look to trade Paul Pierce

Paul Pierce has worn green his entire NBA career.

When Ray Bourque enters the TD Garden these days he enters as a Boston Bruins legend, not as a Bruins and Colorado Avalanche legend.

When Michael Jordan’s “last shot” is discussed, people talk about the dagger of a jumper he drained in Utah in Game 6 of the 1998 NBA Finals as a member of the Chicago Bulls. Not many reminisce about the free throw Jordan hit in Philly against the Sixers on April 16, 2003, which officially was his last NBA shot as a member of the Washington Wizards.

In sports, these late career pit-stops rarely ruin the memories of the prime years for elite athletes. So if you’re worried as to what Paul Pierce’s Celtics legacy will be when his great career ends, don’t. No matter what happens between now and the day No. 34 decides to hang ’em up, he’s a Celtic for life.

This idealistic “loyalty” thing is really the only reason any Celtics fan would want to hold on to Pierce. As currently constructed, the Celtics aren’t winning Banner 18 this year and when next season starts, Pierce will be 36-years-old.

Pierce is a great scoring wing player. Some even argue that he might be the best pure scorer in team history (I still think that Bird guy was pretty good). But Pierce’s points have always come via 3-pointers and spin moves in the paint and pull-up, mid-range jumpers. Not often do they come on a fast break with Rajon Rondo leading the charge. Never do they come with Pierce on the receiving end of a Rondo alley-oop.
At one point in his career we worried that Pierce’s prime was wasting away because the Celtics couldn’t find any players who complimented his style. Soon, we might begin to wonder the same in the case of Rondo.
We still don’t know what it looks like when Rondo plays with a super-athletic wing player who can score the basketball. Sorry, but Jeff Green, he with the 9.4 ppg stat line, doesn’t count.

Would the Celtics offense flow a bit better with Memphis’ Rudy Gay filling the lane? Would Rondo’s old high school buddy Josh Smith be able to finish off one of Rondo’s lobs on the fast break? I’d like to think so.
The problem in acquiring one of those players is that the Celtics will need to give up at least one of their big chips. Pierce fits the bill.

Why would a team like the Grizzlies or Hawks make a swap with the C’s for Pierce? Well, both are in the middle of the pack of their respective conference’s playoff picture. Both are in need of a playoff-tested veteran to push them into the conversation of the league’s best teams. In short, the Celtics need to get younger and those two teams need to get older and wiser.

Pierce, whose contract runs through 2014, was nearly dealt to the New Jersey Nets last year at the trade deadline for Mehmet Okur’s expiring contract and a lottery pick, according to Yahoo’s Adrian Wojnarowski. Danny Ainge has long said that if the right deal came along, he would put loyalty on the back burner.

The time is now for the Celtics to get younger and more athletic. If that means saying goodbye to the beloved captain of the Green, so be it.



News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
Local

Girl, 10, dies after being pulled from water…

A 10-year-old girl died after being pulled from the waters off Coney Island Beach in Brooklyn on Tuesday night, police said.

News

NY judge throws out lawsuit by Empire State…

A New York state judge has thrown out a lawsuit in which longtime investors in the Empire State Building claimed they were shortchanged out of hundreds of millions of dollars…

Local

Mysterious white flags appear over Brooklyn Bridge

Two white flags mysteriously appeared over the towers of the Brooklyn Bridge yesterday in place of the American flags that are a traditional fixture.

National

Judge sets January start for murder trial of…

By Elizabeth BarberBOSTON (Reuters) - Former New England Patriots player Aaron Hernandez will be tried in January for the murder of semi-professional football player Odin…

Television

'Pretty Little Liars' recap: Season 5, Episode 7,…

Drunk girls and ghost brownies: here’s your weekly ‘Pretty Little Liars’ recap by way of Q&A. Q: do they really not check for feet under…

Arts

Don't miss 'Charles James: Beyond Fashion' at the…

Have you been meaning to see "Charles James: Beyond Fashion"? There are only two weeks left to get to the Met and catch this amazing American fashion designer's collection.

Television

Zac Posen talks 'Project Runway' and what it…

We talked to Zac Posen, judge and designer extraordinaire, about the new season of "Project Runway" and what keeps him coming back after three seasons.

Television

'Face Off' contestant David 'DOC' O'Connell sounds off…

David "DOC" O'Connell tells us about getting cast on Season 7 of Syfy's "Face Off," premiering tonight at 9.

NFL

David Tyree hiring has gay rights advocates angry

Former Giants Super Bowl hero David Tyree will re-join the franchise as its new director of player development.

NFL

Ben McAdoo's new offense has Giants excited to…

Even Tom Coughlin feels he has a lot to learn about offensive coordinator Ben McAdoo’s new offense, which makes the veteran coach very excited.

MLB

MLB Power Rankings: A's, Angels, Dodgers, Brewers lead…

MLB Power Rankings: A's, Angels, Dodgers, Brewers lead pack

NFL

2014 NFL season betting odds: Which team will…

2014 NFL season betting odds: Which team will win Super Bowl?

Tech

Learn Braille with these gloves

U.S. scientists have designed high-tech gloves to help users understand Braille in a matter of minutes.

Home

5 New Ikea products that will change your…

We round-up the latest must-have products.

Food

Recipe: Wolfgang Puck's Buttermilk French Toast

We recently spent some time chatting with restauranteur/celebrity chef Wolfgang Puck at his Wolfgang Puck American Grille in the Borgata in Atlantic City. Puck wanted…

Style

Go retro with your sneakers

The best of wacky new sneakers.