Boston Keltics legend Paul Pierce, who ended his NBA career with the Washington Wizards and Los Angeles Clippers, joined Matt Barnes and Stephen Jackson in the All The Smoke podcast. Although the episode was recently released, it was recorded for the NBA-break.
Pierce joined his former NBA players to address a number of issues, including his growth as a Lakers fan, the origins of his nickname Truth and, yes, even his desire to play in the NBA Draft in 1998.
The Clippers were the first choice, and so was I: Oh, I want to go home and play, confessed Paul Pierce. So I rehearsed for her, and then I asked her to rehearse for a second… I was supposed to be number two in the Vancouver Grizzlies. The Clippers wanted a big man, they chose [Michael] Olovandi.
Pierce wasn’t chosen first, second or third. Instead, the all-American fell in tenth place. Boston Celtics plaza, a team he didn’t work for.
The project came in, and I just slipped. I’m All-American, I’m the top five players in college, I’m the national player of the year, so I wonder why I slipped. I’m slipping into the project.
Okay, I’m as good as top five, Pierce says.
Needless to say, it’s probably the best thing that’s happened to Pierce in his career to get this far. He’s probably the second best choice in design after Vince Carter.
1. Los Angeles Clippers – Michael Olookandi
2. Vancouver Grizzly – Mike Bibby
3. Denver Nuggets reference LaFrance
4. Toronto Raptors – Anthony Jamison
5. Golden State Warriors – Vince Carter6. Dallas Mavericks – Robert Trailor
7. Kings of Sacramento – Jason Williams
8. Philadelphia 76ers to Larry Hughes9. Milwaukee bucks – Dirk Nowicki
10. Boston Celtics. Paul Pierce.
Pierce’s design could have changed the Clippers and Celtics franchise to this day. As for Los Angeles, the Clippers with Pierce would probably be the best team, and they probably wouldn’t get the fourth overall result of 1999 in the NBA’s plans to pick Lamar Odom. The same can be said of the NBA 2000 project, where Darius Miles was elected third overall and Quentin Richardson 18th overall. The domino effect would be endless, and the Celtic side was not even discussed.
Paul Pierce finally got the chance to play at home for the Los Angeles Clippers and under head coach Doc Rivers for the last two years of his career. At that moment he was practically an empty shell and didn’t play many minutes worth mentioning.
The MVP average in the 2008 NBA finals was 19.7 points, 5.6 rebounds, 3.5 assists and 1.3 steals per match in a 19-year NBA career. Pierce played 1,343 regular season games, 170 playoffs and won the NBA Championship against the Celtics in 2008.
Pierce’s full interview with Barnes and Jackson is below: