My favorite player doesn’t play anymore. He gave it his all even when his body couldn’t take it anymore. His name is Paul Pierce, and here’s why he’s my favorite player ever.
He went from a McDonalds All-American, to Kansas standout, to a Boston Celtic. As reluctant as he was, even though he loved the Lakers, he became a Celtic. He gave it his all his first year, averaging 16 ppg along with 6 rebounds. Then, a month before his third season, he was stabbed 11 times in the neck, face, and back. A lot of people thought he wouldn’t be able to play the season or even be the same player he once was. But he silenced the doubters and came back to average 25 points and 6 rebounds. He recently stated in an interview that he played all 82 games that season because he was depressed, basketball was his escape. Hero.
In the next season Paul, along with Antoine Walker, carried the Celtics to the Eastern Conference finals, but lost to the Nets. The next season, in a grueling battle against the Pacers, Pierce hit a 3 that will live off in Celtics infamy. I’ll let the video do the talking.
Even through all the bad years, he still stayed. Yes I know he wanted to leave and go to a contender, specifically Dallas. But eventually, the Celtics found help, forming the Big 3.
To be honest, the 2007-2008 was the best season ever. 66-16 record, Kevin Garnett was defensive player of the year, Ray Allen was an amazing shooter, and Paul Pierce became finals MVP. What more could you want from the guy? He finally had his help that he’d been waiting for. His stats weren’t as good, but for the overall good of the team, he cared about winning first and that’s what he did with his new teammates.
Fast forward a bit to 2009-2010, he struggled at the closing games, 6 and 7 in the Finals against the Lakers. Everyone did really. They were without their starting center, and things were different. But you can’t say he didn’t give it his all. Even when the odds changed after the injury, Pierce wouldn’t stop giving it his all. Even getting up their in age, he helped the Celtics two years later take THE MIAMI HEAT to 7 games, giving it his all in his last Eastern Conference Finals run at the age of 34.
He was then traded to the Nets with Kevin Garnett, whooping Toronto’s ass and blocking Lowry’s shot seconds before the buzzer rang in game 7, sending Pierce’s Nets to the second round. The next year,Pierce moved onto Washington t o help out an up and coming Wizards team. Well, he hit a game winner in game 3 for the Wizards vs the Hawks (whom they eventually lost to). This was his emphasis quote after the game.
Then he wasted his years with Doc Rivers’ Clippers. His return to Boston was special and he’ll forever be one of the greatest players in Celtics history. The memories he gave me and my father are untouchable. Shit, I even had 3 of his jerseys. I wanted to be just like him in everyday possible, on and off the court. The main reason for him being my favorite player wasn’t the accomplishments he’s had or the longevity of his career. But what drew me to him was that he wasn’t the tallest, fastest, or strongest guy on the court. But he was the craftiest. No matter how good you had him locked up, he would always find a deceiving trick to score on you with, like his step back he perfected over and over again. That one jumper that gave him many buzzer beaters in his historic career left me in awe everytime. He gave me hope as the little guy. Although I wasn’t very good at basketball, the kid from Inglewood let me know that anything was possible with a little hard work. Salute to the Captain!
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