Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett have elevated the Nets from a solid team that can make it to the first or second round to a good team that has conference finals potential. However, that potential may be short lived as Paul Pierce has just one year left on his contract and has admitted that he has no idea what he’s going to do after this season.
“Who knows what’s going to happen after this year?” Pierce told Gary Washburn of the Boston Globe. “I don’t know what the future is going to bring. I don’t know if I’m going to be back with the Nets. I don’t know if I’m going to retire, you never know what’s going to happen. I feel like I have more in the tank but you never know with injuries, how your body feels. Sometimes those things tell you a lot quicker. Right now, I’ve been feeling good. My legs, my body feels strong.”
It is hard to tell what Pierce is going to do in the future. Retirement seems unlikely at age 36, but he seems to leave that possibility open in that quote. That really depends on how his body holds up this year. He could maybe go back to Boston, but even that seems like a long shot as the Celtics will likely be rebuilding even in a year’s time.
His best option may be to stick with the Nets as under the collective bargaining agreement they would be able to offer him more money than anyone else. However, even that depends on so many other things including how well he gets along with teammates, coaches, and the front office. He may like it there, but feel he’s a better fit with another team. He may even want to come back, but it’s possible the team might not want him.
So many things can happen, but the only thing that is certain is that Pierce is not certain what’s going to happen. We’ll have to see, but Nets fans should not take this year for granted, especially if they have a big season, because a year from now Pierce could be out of town, Kevin Garnett will be 38, and the 2013-14 season might be their one big shot at a title.
Pierce is in the final year of a four-year $61.3 million deal that he signed in July 2010. He is set to earn $15.3 million with the Nets before becoming a free agent. Pierce averaged 20.0 points, 6.8 rebounds, and 5.2 assists per 36 minutes and shot 43.6 percent with the Celtics last season. He turns 36 in October.