Paul Pierce is in the twilight of his career. P2 was nicknamed “The Truth,” and in a recent interview with ESPN.com, he lived up to that moniker. Pierce spit hot fire about some his former teammates, and their lack of drive.
On his relationship with Ray Allen:
“It was a weird relationship,” Pierce conceded. “We were all good friends on the court, but Ray always did his own thing. That’s just the way Ray was. Even when we were playing together, we’d be having a team dinner and Ray wouldn’t show up. We’d go to his charity events but Ray wouldn’t show up to somebody else’s.
“I called him on it. I said, ‘Man, Ray, we support all your stuff but when we ask you, you don’t come to ours.’ I remember when Rondo re-signed with Boston, we had a little dinner at a restaurant and Ray didn’t show up.
On last season with the Brooklyn Nets:
“It was just the guys’ attitudes there. It wasn’t like we were surrounded by a bunch of young guys. They were vets who didn’t want to play and didn’t want to practice. I was looking around saying, ‘What’s this?’ Kevin (Garnett) and I had to pick them up every day in practice.
“If me and Kevin weren’t there, that team would have folded up. That team would have packed it in. We kept them going each and every day.”
On former Nets teammate Deron Williams:
“Before I got there, I looked at Deron as an MVP candidate,’’ Pierce said. “But I felt once we got there, that’s not what he wanted to be. He just didn’t want that.
“I think a lot of the pressure got to him sometimes. This was his first time in the national spotlight. The media in Utah is not the same as the media in New York, so that can wear on some people. I think it really affected him.”
Pierce isn’t the first to say this about Deron Williams, as talented as he is, a certain fire is lacking. Deron has also been labeled a coach killer. You can ask Avery Johnson or his former Utah coach Jerry Sloane how they feel about that description.
Williams responded in the New York Post, saying Paul is entitled to his opinion, and that he has “thick skin.”
Of Nets Joe Johnson, Paul said Joe was quiet, and wants to be left alone. Johnson responded to P2’s critique of him:
“It doesn’t bother me,” Johnson said. “I’ve been criticized before. That’s not the first time and it definitely won’t be the last, so it doesn’t bother me one way or another, I swear.
“If that’s how Paul felt, that’s how Paul felt. He’s entitled to his opinion.”
People have to understand, not every player has that mental edge, or drive to be a winner. Some approach professional sports like the average person does their 9 to 5, a place to clock in, and out of.And even if they have the will, as in the case of Ray Allen, you still may not want to hang out with that person outside of basketball.