Monday, 15 Jul 2024

Paul Pierce Joins Boston Celtics Legends as Team Retires His No. 34

Paul Pierce Retires No. 34

Paul Pierce’s dream became a reality as the Boston Celtics retired his iconic No. 34 jersey at TD Garden. The 23rd person in franchise history to receive this honor, Pierce joined the ranks of Celtics legends. His 19-year career, which included a 2008 NBA championship and Finals MVP title, was commemorated in a ceremony following the Celtics’ game against the Cleveland Cavaliers.

A Special Day for Paul Pierce and the Celtics

Pierce, donning a green plaid blazer, made his entrance onto the court through the newly christened Paul Pierce Players’ Tunnel. This tunnel, featuring his signature, serves as a lasting reminder of what it means to be a Celtic. Chants of “Thank You, Paul Pierce!” filled the arena as his jersey was raised to the rafters. Reflecting on the momentous occasion, Pierce expressed his gratitude and remarked that having his number retired is enough for him, even if he never makes the Hall of Fame.

A Stellar Career Recognized

Paul Pierce’s achievements stand as a testament to his lasting impact on the Celtics organization. He holds the franchise records for the most 3-pointers made, free throws, and steals. With 24,021 points, he is Boston’s second all-time leading scorer, trailing only John Havlicek. Pierce’s 15 seasons with the Celtics also rank second, just behind Havlicek’s 16. His contributions on the court are unmatched, and his legacy as a Celtic is now forever cemented.

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Surrounded by Celtics Greats

Current Celtics players, as well as legendary figures such as Robert Parish, Cedric Maxwell, and Tom “Satch” Sanders, gathered to witness this momentous occasion. Pierce acknowledged the support and inspiration from his family, particularly his mother, Lorraine Hosey, and brothers Jamal and Steve Hosey. He also expressed his gratitude to his wife, Julie, and their three children, which brought him to tears. As the team showered him with tributes, Pierce sat next to the 2008 championship trophy.

A Weekend of Honor and Celebration

The festivities honoring Paul Pierce began with a private dinner hosted by the Celtics, where he was joined by former teammates and friends. The night served as a reminder of the sacrifices Pierce made throughout his career. Being a Celtic was more than just a coincidence; it was destiny.

During the game, the Celtics showed video segments chronicling Pierce’s basketball journey, including his high school days at Inglewood and interviews with friends, family, and former teammates. In a surprise tribute, NBA legends Magic Johnson and Kobe Bryant praised Pierce, with Bryant stating that he made all the Celtics legends proud.

The presence of former Celtics coach Doc Rivers and Pierce’s championship teammates Kevin Garnett and Rajon Rondo added to the emotional atmosphere. Rivers spoke highly of Pierce’s status as an all-time great, stating that winning the 2008 championship solidified his legacy. The night concluded with Pierce’s son, Prince, placing a No. 34 cap on top of the 2008 championship trophy, signifying the culmination of Pierce’s remarkable journey.

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FAQs

Q: How many Celtics legends have had their numbers retired?

A: Paul Pierce is the 23rd person in Celtics history to have his number or name enshrined by the organization.

Q: What records does Paul Pierce hold for the Celtics?

A: Pierce leads in three categories: 3-pointers made, free throws, and steals. Additionally, he is the second all-time leading scorer for the Celtics.

Q: Who attended the jersey retirement ceremony for Paul Pierce?

A: Current Celtics players, along with former Celtics legends like Robert Parish, Cedric Maxwell, and Tom “Satch” Sanders, were present to honor Pierce’s achievements.

Summary

Paul Pierce’s illustrious career with the Boston Celtics was immortalized as the team retired his iconic No. 34 jersey. This recognition placed him alongside the great Celtics legends in franchise history. Pierce’s accomplishments, including an NBA championship and numerous records, highlight his impact on the organization. Surrounded by current and former Celtics players, he expressed his gratitude to his family and reflected on his journey. The weekend of festivities and tributes celebrated Pierce’s legacy as a Celtic, solidifying his place in the team’s history.