I was going to write this article, or ask one of our authors to tackle it, but it seems as though Frank Dell'Apa at the Globe beat me to it. Particularly in the last few games, Paul Pierce has put the team on his back and pulled them to victory. That's not going to surprise anyone, we've seen Paul do this for 11 years now.
Just looking at the games this week, friday against the Raptors, Paul had 18, 5 and 7 in a balanced Celtics attack, but put down a dunk that made Chris Bosh look like he really was a used car salesman. The game before that against the 76ers, Paul put up 27, 6 and 6. Sunday against the Knicks, even though it was KG who hit the winner, it was Paul that won the game for the Celtics as Paul's line for the game was 33, 9 and 6. For the season he's averaging 20, 5 and 4, right around his career totals, in two fewer minutes per game.
Dell'Apa made some great observations on Paul's shooting numbers this year.
He is hitting 51.5 percent from the field, 46.3 percent on 3-pointers, and 84.9 percent on free throws. His career bests are 47.1 percent (2006) from the field, 41.2 percent (1998-99) on 3-pointers, and 84.3 percent on free throws (2007-08).
"I’m taking better shots,’’ Pierce said. "It’s the combination of a lot of things. It’s the offense, getting to open spots, it’s working every day. I’m just trying to get better and I’m working at it.’’
And Doc went about as far as one can in highlight Paul's great play
"He’s the MVP in the league as far as I’m concerned,’’ Rivers said. "Just all the things - leadership, preparation, his intensity on the floor, scoring, assisting. Even on nights he didn’t have big numbers, he made the timely baskets or made a timely defensive play. He’s just been very impressive.
"I just think he’s doing everything, making the extra pass. Early on [in Friday’s 116-103 win over Toronto], he had five shots he could have taken and passed them up to get to the next pass. He saw the action that led to the next action. He had a bunch, a ton of hockey assists, or soccer assists.