Rumor: Paul Pierce might opt out of contract with Wizards, join Clippers

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After his last game in Washington, with the Wizards eliminated by the Atlanta Hawks from these playoffs, Paul Pierce sounded like a guy ready to walk away.

“Truthfully, what was going through my mind is, I don’t have too much of these efforts left, if any,” Pierce said. “These rides throughout the NBA season, throughout the playoffs, are very emotional. They take a lot out of not only your body, but your mind, your spirit…. I don’t even know if I’m going to play basketball anymore,” Pierce said.

But maybe he will — on the other coast with another team that just can’t quite seem to live up to its promise.

Pierce to the Clippers rumors have floated around the league for a while, and David Aldridge at NBA.com brought it up in his column Monday.

Washington’s main issue is complacency. The Wizards could stand pat if Pierce decides to return to D.C. next season rather than opt out of his deal, but many around the league believe Pierce will do just that and finish his career back home in Los Angeles with the Clippers.

The point Aldridge is making is a good one: The Wizards need a long term answer at the three. Pierce enjoyed his time in the city and may, once things settle down, decide to stay put. He spoke glowingly of his teammates there and the city.

Doc Rivers had the chance to go after Pierce last summer but decided to give his full mid-level exception to Spencer Hawes instead. You can bet he’d like that one over.

And he may get the chance. One-year deal and the Clippers get some needed depth at the three and a veteran voice? At an affordable price, it makes sense.

If Pierce wants to go through one more run.