One of the game’s peskiest defenders will admit it he’ll admit it
Paul Pierce made his name as one of the most reliable shooters, clutch performers, and downright gritty basketball players of his time. With the help of Ray Allen and Kevin Garnett he brought a ring home to the team he played for his entire career until he was traded to Brooklyn in 2013, and he earned the nickname “The Truth,” which follows him to this day. Entering in his 16th season in the NBA, Pierce has quickly became one of the key assets to Washington’s amazing start. Recently, Pierce took the time out to discuss his top five toughest players to guard during his legendary NBA career. The list consists of Kobe Bryant, Tracy McGrady, Vince Carter, LeBron James and Carmelo Anthony. Pierce took the time out to explain why each of these 5 NBA greats are on the “The Truth’s” list. Here’a a couple of brief personal testimonies he gave about each superstar.
On Kobe Bryant
What you have to understand about Kobe’s game is that by taking that many shots, he’s meticulously wearing down the defender until he breaks them. He’s made a career out of making guys lose confidence in their defense and then continuing to attack them. He’s won five rings doing that.
On Tracy McGrady
He’s fast, he’s long and he could jump higher than anybody. And if that wasn’t enough, he was one of the better ball handlers in the league. He’s a rare talent, and when you were up against him, you knew you were in for a tough game because he always had the green light.
On Vince Carter
From a defensive standpoint, he put you in such a tight spot. He’s hell to guard out on the perimeter because of the elevation on his shot. But you were so afraid of him blowing by you and throwing down a dunk that would be all over SportsCenter that you would allow him space to shoot. Then he would get hot from three-point range and at that point … what do you do?
On LeBron James
His style of play just wears you out over the course of a game. He’s constantly drawing fouls and getting and-one opportunities. The only way to stop LeBron from getting an and-one is to straight up tackle him. Slapping down on his hands simply won’t work — he’s too strong.
On Carmelo Anthony
If I had to single one guy out who is the most difficult player to guard in the league, it would have to be Carmelo. He’s a unique blend of being big, strong, and athletic while also having a world-class shooting touch and a natural ability to get to the rim. That’s what sets him apart — every facet of his game is elite.