On Wednesday Pierce spoke up again on the Celtics’ latest asset, asserting forcefully that Boston should trade the pick, rather than selecting Washington’s Markelle Fultz. Pierce went on ESPN’s “The Jump” and opened up about what he thought the Celtics should do:
Here’s what he had to say:
“You trade this pick, because he (Markelle Fultz) cannot help the Celtics get over the top. The window is now. You’re a 50-win team, you’re the No. 1 seed. You have to build on this momentum. If you can acquire a Paul George, Jimmy Butler, or Gordon (Hayward) from Utah, you have to do it.
“You need these guys. You want to get over the top. Boston doesn’t praise winning the Eastern Conference. They’re going for a championship,”
The Celtics are certainly in an awkward position. If they take Fultz, it may be difficult to find minutes for him and that’s exactly what he’ll need to develop. With Isaiah Thomas and Avery Bradley entrenched as the team’s starting guards, Fultz may not help put Boston over the top in the East any time soon. But sending that No. 1 pick elsewhere to bring in a top-level wing player could help the Celtics compete with the Cleveland Cavaliers.
This is certainly one of those “good” problems to have, but the Celtics’ decision clearly isn’t some kind of open and shut case. They have a lot to think about between now and draft night.