Paul Pierce Facing Pressure to Deliver

by June 10, 2010
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Pierce’s offensive production has been hampered by Ron Artest’s stifling defense (and, as the Celtics would argue, the refs’ whistles), but his team needs him to come through in tonight’s must-win game. The Boston Herald implores the C’s captain to come through, in slightly hysterical fashion: “The Celtics trail the Lakers 1-2 in the NBA Finals for a lot of different reasons but the most glaring has been Pierce’s disappearance as a factor. In the most important series of the season he is shooting only 36.1 percent (13 of 36) and averaging nearly three points less per game than his playoff average. But more importantly too many of his points have come after the outcome was decided. While perhaps not coming totally at garbage time they at least came at litter time. In other words, they came when their effect was, for the most part, non-existent on the outcome. If the Celtics are to win their 18th NBA title this year, they not only want The Truth on that wall tonight, they need him on that wall. They need him to make plain to Ron Artest what Col. Jessup said to Lt. Kaffee: that despite early evidence to the contrary, ‘YOU CAN’T HANDLE THE TRUTH!’ The world that centers around the NBA has given Artest deserved props for the way he’s dropped a blanket over Pierce, but Pierce and the Celtics have not. Yesterday Doc Rivers was asked how much Artest is affecting Pierce’s production and claimed, ‘I don’t think he is. I don’t. I thought Paul is getting good shots. He’s not making some of them. Maybe Ron has something to do with that but if we get Paul in rhythm and get him on his spots, I feel very confident that Paul will have big games for the rest of the series.’ Unlike Lt. Kaffee, Doc Rivers knows he needs The Truth on that wall. He wants him on that wall. What The Truth has to do is climb up there with the same, unfettered mind of Col. Jessup and fire into the face of Ron Artest. It’s time for The Truth to be heard. It’s time for The Truth to order a ‘code green’ on the Lakers because if he doesn’t, it could be code red for the Celtics.”