A pair of old teammates will link together one more time. 2020 Basketball Hall of Fame inductee Kevin Garnett will present his former teammate Paul Pierce at the 2021 induction ceremony. One condition provided to the next band of inductees involved choosing a prior one to present them. Pierce’s choice seemed fitting.
Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett played together from 2007 to 2014. Garnett spent the first stretch of his professional career in Minnesota with the Timberwolves. A massive trade in the ’07 offseason saw Garnett join forces with Pierce as a member of the Boston Celtics. The pair played crucial roles in the Celtics turnaround in the season that followed. They would ultimately emerge victorious as they went on to win the 2008 NBA championship, Boston’s first in 22 years.
In the following seasons, Garnett and Pierce led the Celtics to sustained success. This would keep until 2013. As the Celtics primed themselves for a rebuild, they moved on from their older stars. Pierce and Garnett were packaged in a massive trade that saw them join the Brooklyn Nets. The 2013-14 season would slate as the last year the pair would play together. Given their shared success as teammates, it seems only right that Garnett would introduce Pierce into the Hall.
The 2021 basketball Hall of Fame class
Paul Pierce will enter the Hall of Fame with a class of individuals who made their mark on the game throughout their respective careers. Other notable entrants in this year’s class include Rick Adelman, Chris Bosh, Ben Wallace, Chris Webber, Jay Wright, Toni Kukoc, Lauren Jackson, and Yolanda Griffith.
In Paul Pierce’s case, Chris Bosh’s entry should draw some extra interest since Ray Allen will be presenting him. The 2018 Hall-of-Famer also played a pivotal role in Boston’s 2008 championship win. However, the story of Ray Allen’s Celtics career has long been mired in infamy among his former teammates.
His parting with the team in favor of joining their then-rivals in Miami disappointed many Celtics players. To this day, the relationship between the parties involved remains tattered. Perhaps now, in light of the celebration soon to come, the squabble can end.