But, per Doc Rivers’ wishes, Pierce says he’ll first sign with the Celtics.
Pierce, via SiriusXM NBA Radio:
I would love to do that. I think I’ll always be remembered as a Celtic. I had all my glory days, all my prime was pretty much as a Boston Celtic. So, I think I owe the fans and I owe myself that much, just to be able to put that uniform on one more time and go out that way, say I retired a Boston Celtic.
Who knew Amar’e Stoudemire would be such a trendsetter?
Pierce has $1,096,080 of his $3,679,840 salary in 2017-18 guaranteed. The Clippers would waive him, maybe in conjunction with a buyout that sees him forgo his guaranteed money. The way they manage their finances, repeatedly landing near the hard cap, the Clippers should not give Pierce a retirement gift that counts toward team salary. However, the way they manage their finances, they very well might pay a portion of his deal.
The Celtics would have to agree to sign Pierce. But a one-year unguaranteed deal with the understanding they’ll waive him after a press conference, why not? It’s great publicity.
As Pierce said, he spent his best years in Boston. He made 10 All-Star games and won a championship in his 15 season there. Pierce is the greatest Celtic since Larry Bird.
Where Pierce retires means little. Nobody will associate him with the Nets, Wizards or Clippers, regardless. He’s a Celtic through and through.
But if Pierce wants to return to Boston for ceremony, why not? He has earned it.