Paul Pierce Throws Shade at LeBron, Durant over Giannis Signing

Paul Pierce showed his admiration for Giannis Antetokounmpo and his decision to stay in Milwaukee when he signed the largest contract in NBA history.

“That’s the sign of an old school player mentality,” Pierce said on The Jump. “When I hear him speak in his interviews, he doesn’t go work out with other superstars; he doesn’t want to be friends with them. He’s engulfed himself in Milwaukee, and he said, ‘I’mma build my legacy right here.’ ”

Paul Pierce has never been shy about his rivalry with LeBron James. In 2017, he made comments about the validity of James’ championships and a hypothetical about them facing off if they were the same age during their years battling each other.

“I always said that if I and he [LeBron] were of the same age, it’d be different,” Pierce said. “He might not have gotten those championships in Miami if I was 26 and he was 26.”

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Paul Pierce stayed with the Boston Celtics, the team that drafted him 10th overall, for 15 seasons; winning a championship during his 10th year when the team acquired both Kevin Garnett and Ray Allen while also drafting Rajon Rondo. It’s no surprise he values loyalty over anything else when it comes to winning titles.

LeBron faced off against Paul Pierce and the Celtics four times, splitting the series victories. After losing the first two with the Cavaliers, LeBron went to South Beach and beat Pierce and the Celtics in back to back years. Additionally, LeBron and the Heat took care of the Brooklyn Nets in 2014, a squad led by Pierce and Garnett built for one purpose, to defeat the Heatles.

For Milwaukee, the organization was rewarded for its star treatment and strong supporting cast with one of the best basketball players deciding to stay in the small market.

But with Pierce’s quote, it insinuates that Giannis winning a title is a sure thing, which past playoffs showed that is not the case. Is there a discernable difference between poaching stars to join your team versus leaving the team entirely? Pierce thinks so as he falls in the former category whereas LeBron and Durant fall in the latter.

With the contract wrapped up and pundits rejoicing about the balance of power in the NBA, one question remains. Can Giannis reward his organization with a championship?

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