Pierce one of just five Celtics named to 10 All-Star teams


Pierce one of just five Celtics named to 10 All-Star teams

ORLANDO, Fla. The debate will go on for years as to where Paul Pierce stands in the pantheon of great Boston Celtic players.

While he's often compared to Celtics greats of the past, a more accurate measurement might be to compare him to his contemporaries of today.

But in doing so, it brings you back to what's clear.

Paul Pierce is without question, one of the greatest players to ever play for the C's.

And while the argument for him being near the top consists of a bevy of numbers, you can add one more number - 10 - to the list.

That would be the number of all-star appearances by the 34-year-old.

Only four other players in Celtics history have been to 10 or more all-star games.

Bob Cousy and John Havlicek were named 13 times each. Bill Russell was selected 12 times. And the man that Pierce recently passed for No. 2 on the franchise's all-time scorers list, Larry Bird, was a 10-time all-star as well.

Cousy. Havlicek. Russell. Bird.

Yes, when it comes to being an all-star, Pierce is indeed in pretty select company.

"It's a great honor," Pierce told Comcast SportsNet and CSNNE.com. "It's a tribute to the hard work that I put in over the years, and staying lucky to be injury-free. I'm very thankful, each and every time you get a chance to play in an all-star game, representing the Boston Celtics is a tremendous honor."

Making things even trickier this year was Pierce missing all of training camp except for one practice, and then having to sit out the first three games - all losses - because of a right heel injury.

Pierce did not look good during his first few games back, prompting some to wonder if it was him still recovering from the injury, or whether the Captain had lost a step or two.

Pierce soon put those doubts to rest with a blistering stretch of play that began with a 34-point, 10-assist, 8-rebound performance in a 100-94 win at Washington on Jan. 22.

Over the next 10 games, Pierce averaged 21 points, 7.1 assists and 6.7 rebounds while the C's went 8-2. In the mix of the that, Pierce was named Eastern Conference player of the week. For the season, Pierce is averaging a team-high 17.6 points to go with five rebounds and a career-high 5.3 assists.

While Pierce's play during that stretch certainly strengthened his all-star credentials, being part of All-Star weekend, he said, was never something he gave much thought.

"Coming into each and every season, it's not really a goal of mine to make the All-Star team," Pierce said. "I just go out there and do the best I can to help my team win. At this stage, in the last three or four years, I'm more about the team than individual things and trying to win a championship. Whatever comes out of that, comes. It just so happens that I made the all-star team on my individual performance. But without my teammates, without them, I wouldn't be here."

Brown releases statement: 'I never struck my wife, and never would'


Brown releases statement: 'I never struck my wife, and never would'

Giants kicker Josh Brown released a statement via ESPN on Thursday

Brown was placed on the commissioner’s exempt list last week after more information about his history of abusing women -- a history he admitted to in documents obtained by SNY -- came to light.

"I am sorry that my past has called into question the character or integrity of The New York Giants, Mr. Mara or any of those who have supported me along the way. I have taken measures to get help so that I may be the voice of change, not a statistic. It is important to share that I never struck my wife, and never would. Abuse takes many forms, and is not a gray area. Through the past several years I have worked to identify and rectify my own behaviors. The road to rehabilitation is a journey and a constant modification of a way of life. My journey will continue forever as a person determined to leave a positive legacy and I embrace the opportunities to show and speak about what has helped me to be that man. In the interim, I am cooperating with the Giants and the NFL. Thank you to everyone that has supported me, I will not let you down."

While Brown apologized to his team, Giants owner John Mara and those who've supported him, he did not apologize to his ex-wife, Molly, or any of the other women who he, in his own words, "objectified," according to an email turned over to police. 

While Brown wanted to make clear he did not strike his wife, he did not mention the toll taken on victims of emotional or psychological abuse -- both of which he has admitted to in journal entries.

While he released a statement, there's still plenty left unsaid.