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Earlier in the season Paul Pierce scored his 20,000th point. Paul has always been considered a great scorer but always seems to be left off of the all-time lists. If you're an elite scorer in the 00's you're being compared to Kobe Bryant, according to most people Paul falls drastically short in that comparison. No Paul Pierce has not had over 100 games with 40+ points, he only has 19 of them. On flip side P2 hasn't had 94 games with over 30 shots attempted, he only has 10.
In NBA history only Adrian Dantly topped the 20K milestone with less shots than Paul Pierce. Is it hard to believe? Paul has always hung right above the league average in FG% and 3PT%, while consistently being one of the best at getting himself to the line. If you can't tell that Paul is great, you better tell me what YOUR seeing.
In the early 00's the talk of the league was Shaq and Kobe, but if you look at the books you'll find that the 2nd most productive combo in those years was Pierce and Antoine. Only problem is that Antoine defensively and efficiently leaves quite a bit to be desired. By the end of Walker's career in Boston it became obvious that the student had eclipsed the teacher. Antoine was taking shots away from Pierce, and he had to go.
The Post-Wiggle Celtics asked Pierce to do everything. When he came through it was a sight to see, but when he didn't the results weren't to great. Over the next 4 years Paul would be asked to suffer through highs and lows, or maybe even lows and deeper lows. While gaining individual success and recognition from his peers, the national audience would come to know him as a career loser. Come 2007 Paul was tired of the being the lone star on a team filled with 2nd round picks and players that couldn't stay on the floor. After that summer everything would change.
The Big 3 era has shown Boston a different, while at the same time, very familiar Paul Pierce. The Truth has shown he's still one of the league's premier 4th Quarter scorers, he's shown that he is deadly from anywhere on the court, and most of all he's shown that despite all the great players around him he's still the Captain of this Celtic team.
Tommy Heinsohn said on Pierce, (CSNNE)
"What makes Paul Pierce an exceptional player, offensively above anybody that's ever played, i think, is his variety of shots. His ability to hit the three's, he has the tweeners, he can go 1-on -1, can comes off picks, get out on the break, finish strong, he can go over the top and slam it. They've never had a player like that, Havlicek might be a better player because of his defense, or Bird because of his passing, but Paul Pierce is the best scorer The Celtics have ever had."
If Paul can keep playing at his current level for the next 2-3 seasons, which many believe is likely, he'll catch up on some serious milestones. Paul will most likely fall just short of 2,000 Three-Pointers, but should get just over 26,000 total points. If you factor in years where he may play past his prime, 27,000 career points, but that depends on how long Paul wants to keep pushing.
Whether Paul Pierce is The Sidekick, The Lone Hope, or just a piece of the puzzle, he's going to drop buckets on your head when it matters, and he's going to step up in the biggest games. I'm not hyping him up it's just the truth.