The following is not a direct rumor per se. It is the informed opinion of someone who covers the Celtics and travels with the team. Greg Dickerson is reporting that Paul Pierce wants to be back with the Celtics next year, but doesn't think he will be.
"I don't think they will (bring Pierce back)," Dickerson said Sunday on CSNNE. "And I know that the company that Paul Pierce hangs around in, they do not believe – and I don't think Paul Pierce believes – that he is going to be brought back next year at $15 million. I know for a fact that people around Paul Pierce have pretty much resigned themselves to the fact that he's played his final game in a Boston Celtics uniform. Again, Paul wants to stay – obviously for $15 million, but he wants to finish his career in a Celtics uniform."
Again, this is mostly one man's opinion, but it also matches another man's opinion that also travels with the team. One Cedric Maxwell said much the same thing a week or so ago. Guys that travel with the team hear more than you or I and they might have connections with players and their friends and family that most reporters might not have.
Still, to a certain extent, Paul Pierce himself might yet be in the dark about his future. It isn't really in his hands. At some point this week it sounds like Paul will have conversations with his agent, Danny Ainge, maybe even Doc and Kevin and even Wyc Grousbeck and company. This isn't a light decision to make and all parties will want to be as informed as possible on the next steps.
Ultimately the decision rests on Danny Ainge's shoulders and he's both frank in his philosophy and tight lipped on his plan. So we'll just have to wait and see (and speculate).
Dickerson also opines that if Pierce is gone, so is Kevin Garnett - either to retirement or to one of the Los Angeles teams via trade (man, I can't even picture him in a Laker uniform). Dickerson also strongly dismisses any notion that Doc would coach anywhere but Boston next year. Take all for what it is worth.
Also for the record, Dickerson is of the opinion that the Celtics should hang onto Pierce. Not just for sentimental reasons, but because the "tanking" option seems so fruitless.
When asked what he'd do about the roster if he were the GM, Dickerson answered, "From a basketball standpoint, I'd bring everybody back together. You can't get bad enough if you understand what I'm trying to say." "You're still gonna have Jeff Green. You're still gonna have Rajon Rondo. You aren't all of a sudden going to be one of two, three, or four worst teams in the NBA.
So, I know this isn't exactly news but it is a pretty slow news day and instead of rehashing all the potential decisions that Ainge has to make (as Forsberg does today), I figured I'd go with some quasi-rumorish material.
Oh, and by the way, I understand that it is difficult to see this topic brought up day after day, but two notes about that. 1) There is no bigger Paul Pierce fan than me. I can't believe I actually have to type that out, but I'll refer you to my archives for a mountain of evidence to that effect. 2) If Pierce leaves, it is the biggest potential event in recent Celtic history since Kevin Garnett arrived in Boston. That's huge, huge news and just the hint of it is discussion worthy news. I don't want to see him go, but if he does, the ramifications are simply too large to fit into one or two articles. So here we are, blogging about this topic again (which you are more than welcome to skip over or ignore if that is how you process things). But I digress ...a bit.
I've asked in the past what you want to happen and the largest response was that you fans want to "run it back." Now I think it would be interesting to see what you THINK will happen. Give your educated guess much like Dickerson does above.