Paul Pierce sees a lot of similarities between himself and many of today’s biggest stars. It’s often so uncanny, it’s like looking into a mirror. As a broadcaster for ESPN, drawing comparisons to a younger version of himself is one of his favorite analytical tools. Humility has never been one of his strong suits.
At this point, the shameless self-aggrandizing has become so rampant that it borders on parody. So it wasn’t much of a surprise on Friday night when the NBA Countdown crew asked Pierce who had the better career between himself and Dwyane Wade, who will officially retire at the end of the season.
Pierce, of course, didn’t hesitate. Not only does he believe he’s a better all-around player than Wade, he took it a step further to claim that, had he been put in a similar situation of playing alongside Shaquille O’Neal and LeBron James, he would’ve finished his career with substantially more hardware than Wade.
“If I was 24 years old, you give me Shaq, when I’m 24-25, you give me LeBron and Bosh, I’d be sitting on five or six championships, easy.”
Jalen Rose was quick to point out that Pierce did indeed play alongside future Hall of Famers in Boston with Ray Allen and Kevin Garnett, though Pierce was quick to counter with the argument that a full decade of his career prior to that was frittered away on losing teams.
Regardless, this take from Pierce is one you could’ve seen coming a mile away. But anytime you have to add that many asterisks and qualifiers to your argument, that should be a sign that it maybe isn’t as airtight as you think.
Jared Dudley quickly took to Twitter to offer his thoughts, and though Wade himself briefly chimed in, he’s mostly staying out of the fray, for now.