The Truth Behind Paul Pierce's Iconic 2008 NBA Finals Performance
BOSTON - Paul Pierce, who once played for the Boston Celtics and now analyzes basketball for ESPN, already cast himself in the role of the heel by making the outlandish claim that he'd had a better career than Dwyane Wade. Of course, the internet jumped on this hubris, and Pierce instantly became a meme, everyone piling on to make fun of Pierce for being "delusional". Everyone, that is, except for Wade himself.
But Pierce failed to embrace this bit of goodwill and return his focus to basketball analysis. Instead, he decided to dig his hole even deeper by turning the focus to one of the most iconic moments of his career: the 2008 NBA Finals.
During the 2008 NBA Finals, everyone's predictions that the Celtics, led by Pierce, Kevin Garnett, and Ray Allen, would demolish the Los Angeles Lakers fell by the wayside when Pierce seemed to have suffered a devastating knee injury during the first game of the series. It seemed like Boston had lost their leader. They'd lost their "Truth." But of course, Pierce somehow came back onto the court, recorded a four point play, and played out of his mind to lead the Celtics to an improbable victory. No one was ever quite sure how Pierce recovered from his knee injury so quickly.
Ever since then, rumors have swirled that Pierce did not actually hurt his knee, but rather had soiled himself on the court and sought an excuse to get him into the locker room without telling anyone the embarrassing truth. The likely factual story was that Pierce was afraid to walk on his knee, which was his original story. But during the broadcast of the third game of the NBA Finals, Pierce told his ESPN colleagues on the panel what the actual truth was. He said, "I have a confession to make: I just had to go to the bathroom."
It seemed like the mystery had been finally solved, until Pierce later tweeted the following.
And now, it seems like we're back to square one of not knowing the truth. But if I know "The Truth," then I know that he was way too serious on television to be joking. I believe that Pierce never felt a knee injury during the NBA Finals. But what do you believe?
Image via Flickr / Keith Allison