Pierce not thinking about being bought out by Celtics

Pierce not thinking about being bought out by Celtics
May 1, 2013, 1:00 pm
Share This Post

NEW YORK -- In the past, Paul Pierce hasn't given much thought to what the Celtics' plans were for the future because they always included him. But last summer, there was a different sense throughout the league that the captain's time in Boston might be coming to an end. The C's entertained trading him shortly before the trading deadline in February, but those deals eventually died.

With the C's able to buy out Pierce for just $5 million this summer, the Celtics front office may indeed see this as the right time to hit the reset button and start seriously building toward a future without Pierce.

"Truthfully, I haven't put too much thought into it," said Pierce, who added that he plans to play at least one more season. "The organization is going to do what it has to do. It's nothing that's stressing me out; that's what it is. Every year, they have decisions to make. And those are their decisions, so I leave it to them."

Pierce, to some degree, has been made more expendable with the emergence of Jeff Green, who was acquired in 2010 in part because of his potential as a successor to Pierce at the small forward position. While Green was up and down throughout most of the regular season, he seemed to find his stride in the final months and has catapulted that into a decent postseason. In four games, Green has averaged 20.8 points and 5.8 rebounds per game.

Meanwhile Pierce has been asked to play shooting guard and has averaged a team-best 21.3 points. However, he has mishandled the ball far too often for his liking or the Celtics for that matter, with at least five turnovers in each of the four games.

The turnovers combined with Pierce's explosiveness off the dribble being inconsistent-to-non-existent at times are both factors that may come into play as the C's decide on what to do with him moving forward.

Regardless of what the C's decide to do, Pierce seems to be at peace with whatever decision is made.

"I've always been a guy that said, things happen for a reason. I was the number 10 pick. I didn't anticipate that," Pierce said. "I always feel like throughout my career, everything is going to fall into the right place for me. I know at the end of the day, whatever they do, whatever I do, it's going to fall into the right place for me."

Even if Pierce is traded, he still has every intention of finishing off his career as a Celtic.

"But you know, they're the ones who have a one-year contract for next year though it's not (fully) guaranteed," Pierce said. "The decision is in their hands. Whatever decision they make, maybe if they trade me somewhere or I end up somewhere else, maybe it can end up a situation where I come back for a one-day deal and retire a Celtic."