Friday, July 2, 2010
Updated: July 3, 8:40 PM ET
Pierce-Celtics talks still progressing
ESPN.com news services
BOSTON -- The Boston Celtics and captain Paul Pierce are continuing talks on a new contract and are closing in on an agreement, sources close to the situation have told ESPN.com.
Multiple media outlets are reporting that the sides have reached agreement on a four-year extension, but the reports are premature, sources told ESPN.com. Pierce is engaged in talks with no other team, but a deal has not been completed, the sources said Friday.
The sides are discussing a four-year deal worth between $60 million and $62 million, but whether the fourth year is guaranteed or not is a big point of contention, a source told ESPN The Magazine's Ric Bucher. Pierce, who opted out of the final year of his contract and sacrificed $21.5 million, is taking a significant reduction to help the Celtics re-sign unrestricted free agent Ray Allen and bring in another quality player.
The Boston Herald, which first reported a deal had been reached, said Pierce would get $61 million over four years, with a mutual option for the fourth year. The Associated Press, citing a Celtics team official who spoke on the condition of anonymity, is reporting that the sides have agreed to terms.
Celtics spokesman Jeff Twiss had no comment when reached Friday by The Associated Press.
Pierce has spent his entire 12-year career with the Celtics. He is second only to Larry Bird among longtime Celtics in points per game. Pierce is first in 3-pointers, second in steals, third in total points, eighth in games played and ninth in rebounds.
Information from ESPN.com senior NBA writer Marc Stein and The Associated Press was used in this report.