Paul Pierce is in his 17th NBA season, and he’s having all kinds of fun in these playoffs. But he’d like to remind you that what he’s doing is nothing new; it’s who he’s been his entire career.
Pierce got things rolling with some trash talk in advance of the Wizards’ series against the Raptors, which baited Toronto’s GM into responding profanely, and ultimately cost the Raptors a total of $60,000 in fines.
He backed up his words with plenty of clutch play in the series, including a dagger three to seal the Game 3 win, which enabled him to talk even more. And once the sweep was complete, Pierce let loose on multiple social media platforms to troll the Raptors in every way possible.
He even went third person recently to let everyone know that he won’t be changing his ways anytime soon.
“I just look at it as good banter,” Pierce said. “Good banter. That’s the word. A lot of this stuff I don’t pre-think it. It just comes out naturally.”
He added: “Paul Pierce is just going to be who Paul Pierce is going to be. I’m going to be myself. If it helps our team or hurts our team, I’m just trying to be myself and see where that goes. I’m a vocal person. I speak up. I tell the guys how I feel. I’m emotional. It’s just me being me truthfully.”
And from Dan Steinberg of the Washington Post:
“That’s just me,” Pierce said on Tuesday. “I mean, if you go to YouTube, [search] Paul Pierce starting in 1998. You’ll see the same things.”
The Wizards struggled in the second half of the regular season, but looked to be coming together at just the right time during their first-round sweep of the Raptors. The top-seeded Hawks look vulnerable all of a sudden, and you’d have to give the Wizards a fighting chance in a second-round matchup against either Atlanta or Brooklyn, the winner of which would find themselves in the Eastern Conference Finals.
But no matter when Washington’s season comes to a close, it’s clear that Pierce will be enjoying the ride for as long as it lasts.