Seems like just yesterday I was out with my friends in Adams Morgan celebrating the sudden and shocking signing of Paul Pierce. Begging the bartenders at Brass Monkey to change the channel to Sportscenter definitely wasn’t the best look, but who cares we got The Truth!! 1 year later it did come as somewhat of a surprise to see the reported interest Pierce has in joining the Clippers, especially considering the difference in potential salary ($6.6 million verse somewhere around $3.4 million), and how much fun and success Pierce had with the Wizards this season. With the Wizards a few steps from knocking on the door at the Eastern Conference Finals, this offseason is as important as any we’ve had in the past 20 years even though we wont be bringing in any “big name” free agents.
Throughout the regular season and playoffs Pierce showed countless reasons why he is so important to the Wizards and why the front office has to be prepared to give him a successful presentation during this free agent window. Obviously the Wiz need his late game heroics and leadership, but as the playoffs showed, may also need his spacing ability with Nene seemingly shrinking daily like he’s ready to move into Sunrise Senior Living.
At this point in his career it’s pretty clear that Pierce wants to play 25 minutes a game for a championship contender, which is problematic because he can accomplish that on the Wizards or Clippers. With both teams he can start, be the veteran leader, and be a valuable piece on a potential conference championship team. The the Clips can offer living in his hometown, being a part of a possibly more championship ready team and playing under previous Celtics head coach Doc Rivers one last time.
An unfortunate consequence of waiting for Pierce to make up his mind is that the Wizards can’t really sign any other free agents until they know what Pierce has decided to do. So, here’s to hoping he decides quickly, decides to stick with these two for 1 more year, and can keep teaching the Truth.