During last night’s Boston Celtics game, Isaiah Thomas took to Twitter to concede his desire for a video tribute during his return to the TD Garden on February 11.
In case you forgot, the Sunday afternoon matchup against the Cleveland Cavaliers is scheduled to be “Paul Pierce Night” at the Garden, when the team will raise his #34 to the rafters to be alongside other Celtic legends.
Last night Isaiah Thomas tweeted:
I'd like to thank the Celtics for their gracious offer to play a video tribute on Feb 11th celebrating my 3yrs in Boston. But since it appears this has caused some controversy w/ Paul Pierce's night I'd ask the Celtics instead to focus all of their attention on #34's career.— Isaiah Thomas (@isaiahthomas) January 17, 2018
Here we go once again with Thomas making it all about himself and is framing it to make it seem like he’s the “good guy” here letting Pierce have his night. When in all reality, he should’ve just let the team just do their thing when he came back the first time, because he’s lucky to even get a tribute from the team. And not to mention, that Paul Pierce could arguably be the best player to wear the C’s uniform over the last 20 years. Okay, okay. I’ll give you Kevin Garnett too. But that’s it (for now…cough…Kyrie Irving…cough).
This developing saga has been going on for far too long now. It all started when Thomas originally asked the Celtics to hold back from playing a tribute during his return to the Garden with the Cavs on January 3. He asked the team to wait because he wasn’t going to be playing in the game and he wanted his family to be there for the tribute.
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Everything was cool until it was realized that the next available date to honor him just so happens to be the same night that “The Truth” will be honored by the team. That’s when the drama really got juicy.
Right from jump street, Pierce wasn’t on-board with the idea of sharing his night with someone else, never mind the fact that he wasn’t a teammate of his or he never really won anything with Boston to boot.
As former Celtics point guard and NBA Champion, Rajon Rondo put to Bill Doyle of the Worcester Telegram & Gazette, “What has he [Isaiah] done? This is the Boston Celtics. This isn’t the Phoenix Suns, no disrespect to any other organization, but you don’t hang conference titles. Do we hang going to the conference finals? What do we hang here?”
The Answer: NBA Championship Banners, 17 to be exact, and the numbers of some the greatest Celtics to ever wear the clover green. And quiet a few of these players happen to be some of the greatest players the league has ever seen.
Early yesterday Pierce explained why he objected to the plans of honoring Thomas before I.T. had a chance to decline the tribute via Twitter.
“[Thomas] had a shot to be honored,” Pierce said to ESPN. “You came to Boston. Whether you are playing or not, you should have had your tribute then. I just don’t see how, if someone is having a jersey retirement, they’re going to be running other tributes for other players.”
Pierce continues on with, “Danny tried to sell me on it, but I told him, ‘He had a shot, Danny, and he punked you on it. He pretty much dictated everything.’ They let it happen because they felt sorry how (the trade to Cleveland) went down. It’s guilt. That’s what it is.”
“I wanted to make it clear that it was never my intention or Isaiah’s intention to take away from the special day for Paul Pierce,” Ainge told ESPN. “We owe Paul a lot. I feel indebted to him. The whole organization feels that way. We will have a great night for him. Argument over.”
While Pierce was giving the situation some thought, he spoke with his wife, mother, agent and good friend and former teammate, Kevin Garnett.
“Everyone understood where I was coming from,” Pierce said. “KG was like, ‘Isaiah who? Hell no, you’re damn right you’re not sharing your night with him.'”
Remember this from I.T. in a few weeks:
I look forward to coming back and playing in Boston on Feb 11th and see all of the great fans whom I will always remember for their love and incredible support the past few years.— Isaiah Thomas (@isaiahthomas) January 17, 2018
And one last thing! The focus should be on Paul Pierce on February 11, regardless of what Isaiah Thomas wants.
— By John ‘The Dude’ Hardiman, 985TheSportsHub.com