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Report: Clippers’ Paul Pierce intends to play next season


The Clippers, due to salary-cap restraints, had a simple realistic mission this offseason: Retain as much of their talent as possible.

It went so-so.

They re-signed Jamal Crawford, Austin Rivers, Wesley Johnson and Luc Mbah a Moute and lost Jeff Green (to the Magic) and Cole Aldrich (to the Timberwolves).

At least it seems the Clippers will keep Paul Pierce, who was considering retirement.

Ben Bolch of the Los Angeles Times:

With the retirements of Tim Duncan and Kobe Bryant, Pierce is tied with Dirk Nowitzki and Vince Carter for second-most seasons played (18) among active players. Kevin Garnett ranks first (21).

Just don’t expect much from Pierce, who turns 39 before the season. Moving to power forward injected late life into his career, but he couldn’t hold off the effects of aging last season. That’s unlikely to improve a year later.

Perhaps, he can help the Clippers situationally. They’re thin behind Blake Griffin, as Marreese Speights makes a better impact at center. Johnson and Mbah a Moute are treading water at small forward, so even if that’s not Pierce’s best position, he still might play there.

But even limited contributions might be asking too much from Pierce at this stage.