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Three things cannot be long hidden: the sun, the moon, and the truth. – Buddha
There is something different about Paul Pierce then the other two members of the Big 3 even though they all have the same number of titles with the Celtics. KG made his bones in Minnesota, and Ray Allen wasn’t here long enough and then left under bad terms. But I was front and center watching the Truth when he was coached by ML Carr and the Celtics were the coldest tickets in town. I was watching from the start when he was a me-first player with a bad shot selection and was allergic to defense. I lived around the corner from where he was stabbed and thought for sure he was done. But what makes it so sweet is he proved everyone, including me, wrong. He adapted his game. He stayed out of trouble. He became a better passer, rebounder and his defense improved. He became a win first player. He made the Celtics relevant again. He built the foundation for our last banner. And every drop of his blood was Celtic green.
One of my favorite live memories of Paul Pierce in the Garden was when he was a Clipper. It was the last game he played in the Garden. When they played the highlight reel of his career during a timeout and we watched him tear up with appreciation, it was such a gratifying moment as a fan. It was obvious the mutual love he had for the city and the fans. At this point in his career, he was only playing a few minutes a game as he was a role player and veteran locker room leader. The last 2 minutes of the game was listening to the entire Garden chant at Coach Doc Rivers to put Paul in. It didn’t look like it was going to happen. With 19.8 seconds left Doc finally gave in and sent #34 to the booth for one last dance on the parquet. A pick and a pop to Paul behind the 3pt line with 11 seconds left was the most meaningful shot that meant everything. As the ball went through the net, the Garden roared for one final time. On the 18th year anniversary of him becoming a Celtics, he cemented his place as one of the best Celtics to ever play. God Bless the Truth.