“This is it, my final season.” With that statement, Paul Pierce announces his retirement via the Player’s Tribune on Monday. The 2016-17 NBA season will be the last time the 10-time NBA All-Star will be on the court as a player.
Paul Pierce is the latest NBA superstar to join the exodus of players from his generation who retired since the end of the last season joining Kobe Bryant, Tim Duncan and more recently, Kevin Garnett. The 2008 NBA champion and Finals MVP, who won a championship in Boston with Garnett, will finish his career in the city where he grew up and as an LA Clipper where he says that has a very good chance of winning the championship.
“It’s time to move on from the game of basketball,” Pierce wrote. “Just like any difficult decision, I think you’ve got to be at peace with yourself. I’m at peace with retiring, but I’ve got one more ride left. One more season. One more opportunity.”
Pierce, who turns 39 on October, said he felt doubtful about coming back for 2016-17 but upon contemplating the Clipper’s first-round playoff loss against Portland last season, he said unfinished business made him go back to Los Angeles for another title run, according to ESPN.
With both Blake Griffin and Chris Paul returning from injuries this upcoming season, expectations are high for them to win the trophy. Pierce’s confidence that they can chase a championship this season surely played a role in his decision to play one final season.
The Los Angeles Clippers forward has played 18 seasons in the NBA, 19 after this upcoming 2016-17 season, with the first 15 seasons in Boston. He averaged 20.6 points and 5.7 rebounds per game in his career. After his tenure with Boston, he spent one season with the Brooklyn Nets, another with Washington Wizards and last year with the Clippers where he averaged 6.1 points and 2.7 rebounds per game last season.
Paul Pierce will definitely go down as one of the best players of his generation and a future Hall of Fame member who is currently 16th on the NBA all-time scoring list with 26,316 points. But until his retirement, he will try to chase another championship ring with a healthy and exciting Los Angeles Clippers.
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