Chris Broussard on Paul Pierce’s jersey retirement: ‘I think it’s being a little overblown’

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In his discussion with Greg Jennings, Rob Parker and Holly Sonders, Chris Broussard discuss Paul Pierce's #34 jersey retirement in Boston. Plus, Chris disagrees with Robert Parish's comment that 'Paul Pierce is the greatest offensive Celtic ever'.

- And it's documented. I'm not speaking from sources or anything. Robert Parrish has a history of messing around with mind altering drugs. I mean, Larry Bird is by far the best offensive player in Celtics history. It's not even a discussion. I don't even know the Pierce would say anything differently.

I do have a funny Paul Pierce story, though, before I get into it. When Pierce won the finals MVP in 2008, led the Celtics over the Lakers in the finals. Great performance. He said, that summer he was the best player in the world. And I don't know if I tweeted it, or just said it on the television show or something.

But I said, I'm not even sure if he's in the top 10. OK? And Pierce texted me back, saying you're not in my top 10 local reporters. So look, I love Pierce.

- I hope you would have told him, I don't work in Boston. I'm national.

- That was the first thing. I don't work in Boston. I love Pierce. I love what he's doing on television. He-- look. Pierce, first ballot Hall of Famer. I think he was he was clearly the best offensive player, and the Finals MVP obviously. On one of the best teams of this era.

I think behind the Kobe-Shaq Lakers, and these Golden State Warriors, if I had to take the best team, you know, since 2000, I would look at those Boston-- that Big Three Boston.

ANALYST: I'm going to stop you.

- Just that one year.

ANALYST: The 2004 Pistons were even better.

- No, no. Just stop it.

ANALYST: Yes they were.

- They didn't have-- they didn't have any superstars.

ANALYST: They beat Shaq and Kobe in five games.

- Shaq and Kobe were falling apart. They were at odds. They were fighting against-- they were decent squad.

ANALYST: Decent?

- Congratulations. No, they were good. But no, they weren't better than Pierce, Garnett, and Ray Allen, and Rajon Rondo. You'll get your chance. That's ridiculous. All right. But here's the thing. I did feel like this jersey retirement. It was his jersey retirement, was like the biggest jersey retirement I've ever seen.

It felt bigger than Kobe's in LA. Usually jersey retirements are big locally, but not-- it's not a national story. But this was. Look, in part because of Isaiah Thomas, and the whole video tribute fiasco. And then because Paul Pierce is on national TV, on "NBA Countdown" or ESPN.

So that added to it too. But those things, you know, the hype combined with Robert Parrish's statements. I did feel like it's being a little bit overblown. As great as Pierce is. Now this might sound low. I looked at that great small forwards of all time.

And again, Pierce is a first ballot Hall of Famer, no question in my mind. Clearly one of the greatest players in this generation. I do think, too, if the NBA does a top 75 team, in I think it'll be 2022. Like they did the top 50 players of all time. I think he be on the top 75 team. But I think he's the ninth best small forward of all time.

That's sounds low. But you've got LeBron James, Larry Bird, Kevin Durant, Dr. J, Elgin Baylor, Rick Barry, Scottie Pippen, Dominique Wilkins, and then I put Paul Pierce behind those guys.

ANALYST: It's hard to argue with that list.

- Yeah.

- I even put him ahead of Havlicek and James Worthy.

ANALYST: And Havlicek and Worthy were great players.

- Yeah. So that's a heck of a position in the NBA. So but yeah, I think it's been a little overblown.