Celtics

Pierce: 'I want to retire with KG'

760044.jpg

Pierce: 'I want to retire with KG'

WALTHAM -- As Kevin Garnett goes, so does Paul Pierce. At least Pierce sees it that way when it comes to the longevity of their careers.

Pierce is entering his 15th season with the Boston Celtics. The team captain plans to continue playing as long as his body will let him compete at a high level. He doesn't want to do that without Garnett alongside him.

"The goal is to retire with Kevin," Pierce said at Celtics Media Day on Friday. "He recently signed a three-year deal. I see my career kind of ending along the path of his."

This summer 34-year-old Pierce contemplated his own future in the league as Garnett, an unrestricted free agent, decided whether or not to return for his 18th season.

"I really wasn't confident he was coming back," Pierce said. "Kevin, he said this is it for him. People didn't know this, but there are times we'd be in the locker room and be like, 'Kevin, is this your last year?' He was like, 'Yeah, this is it.' I would say, 'If you retire, I'm going to retire.'"

The more Pierce thought about his teammate's future, he realized it would be difficult for Garnett to retire from the league he had been part of since he was a teenager, especially while still playing at a high level. Looking back, though, he is not certain what his future would have held if Garnett had opted to walk away. Pierce had been through a rebuilding stage earlier in his career and didn't want to go through the process again, not at 34 years old.

"I really don't know what that answer would have been," said Pierce. "I know one thing -- I know I didn't want to go through a rebuilding phase. That would have been difficult for me mentally and being motivated, especially at this point in my career. It would have been something I would've had to think hard and long about. And if there was another team out there, I don't know. But it's something I really put consideration into if Kevin had retired."

Both are back and now Pierce is looking forward to another title run. His knee feels "one hundred percent" and he does not have a limit on minutes this season.

Said Pierce, "I'm very excited, especially in this stage in my career, that we're continuing to try to get that elusive trophy that we haven't got in a few years."

Does Kyrie regret exchange with fan in Philly? 'Hell, no'

boston-celtics-kyrie-irving-102117.jpg

Does Kyrie regret exchange with fan in Philly? 'Hell, no'

WALTHAM, Mass. – The NBA has talked with  Celtics guard Kyrie Irving about disparaging comments he made to a fan at halftime that have since gone viral.

Irving said the incident happened as the Celtics were heading back to the locker room at halftime after the Celtics fell behind 50-46 to the Sixers.

MORE:

“Kyrie, where’s LeBron?” yelled the fan.

Irving replied with a lewd suggestion. 

After practice on Saturday, Irving acknowledged that he did say something to a fan and that he had a conversation with the league regarding the incident.

Regrets?

“Hell no,” Irving said. “Man enough to record it on video, that’s on him. I’m glad he got his ad name out there, and his five seconds of fame and it’s gone viral. That’s the social media platform we live on.

Irving added, “I take full responsibility for what I said. You move on.”

The league has not officially announced a fine for Irving, but it’s more a matter of when not if that will be forthcoming.

In fact, earlier today, the league fined New Orleans Pelicans center DeMarcus Cousins $25,000 for “inappropriate language” towards a fan in the Pelicans’ 103-91 loss at Memphis on Wednesday.

Celtics coach Brad Stevens had not seen the video in question but was aware that Irving had been in conversations with the league office regarding the incident.

“Guys know what the right thing to do is,” Stevens said. “People make mistakes; hopefully learn from them and move on. There’s a right and wrong. And if you’re in the wrong you have to own up to it and that’s that.”