Pierce uncertain about Clippers future

Los Angeles (AFP) –


Los Angeles Clippers forward Paul Pierce is undecided about whether or not he will extend his NBA career into a 19th season, coach Doc Rivers revealed Thursday.

Pierce, who spent the bulk of his career working under Rivers at the Boston Celtics, which included an NBA Championship in 2008, is still mulling whether or not to return for the new campaign.

"Paul has had the summer, he's gone back and forth," Rivers said. "I think he has a right to do that. I really do. Paul didn't have the best year last year.

"I don't think he wants to go out that way. So I think that's why he's working to try to come back. But he still may change his mind next week. So we just have to wait. I told him if I see him at training camp, I'm assuming he's playing."

Pierce, who turns 39 next month, joined the Clippers in 2015 from the Washington Wizards but did not have the impact off the bench that the LA team had hoped for.

However Rivers is adamant that Pierce -- nicknamed "The Truth" -- can still play a role for the Clippers.

"If I don't think they can play, then I tell them that. But I think Paul can play," Rivers said. "I don't know how much he'll play, but he can play. I've always thought it's easy for someone else to tell you to retire; I think that's something that the player has to come to by himself.

"I just think Paul loves to play."

Rivers meanwhile said he had spoken to another veteran of the Celtics championship-winning class of 2008, Ray Allen, hinting that the possibility of his coming out of retirement had been discussed.

"I won't talk about what we talked about. I think if Ray was in the right spot, he may play," said Rivers.