The Big Three: Paul Pierce, Kevin Garnett, Ray Allen, and the Rebirth of the Boston Celtics

December 2, 2020
The Big Three: Paul Pierce, Kevin Garnett, Ray Allen, and the Rebirth of the Boston Celtics

New York Times bestselling sportswriter Michael Holleytells the inside story of how Paul Pierce, Kevin Garnett, and RayAllen joined together to form the most dominant team in basketballand lead the Boston Celtics to their first Championship in over twodecades.The first of "The Big Three" was Paul Pierce. As Boston Celticsfans watched the team retire Pierce's jersey in a ceremony onFebruary 11, 2018, they remembered again the incredibleperformances Pierce put on in the city for fifteen years, helpingtake the Celtics escape the bottom of their conference to becomechampions and perennial championship contenders. But Pierce's timein the city wasn't always so smooth. In 2000, he was stabbed in adowntown nightclub eleven times in a seemingly random attack. Sixyears later, remaining the sole star on a struggling team, he askedto be traded and briefly became a lightning rod among fans.Then, in 2007, Boston Celtics General Manager made twomonumental trades bringing Ray Allen and Kevin Garnett to Boston. Apress conference on July 31, 2007 was a sight to behold: Pierce,KG, and Ray Allen holding up Celtics jerseys for the flood ofmedia. Coach Doc Rivers made sure the team bonded over the thoughtof winning a title and living by a Bantu term called Ubuntu, whichtranslates as "I am because we are." Rivers wanted to make it clearthat togetherness and brotherhood would help them maximize theirtalent and win. What came next — the synthesis of the Celtics "BigThree" and their dominant championship run — cemented theirstanding as one of great teams in NBA history, a rival to KobeBryant's Lakers and LeBron James's Cavaliers.This is the team that brought excitement back to the Garden, andtherefore to one of the most storied franchises in all of sports.They met their historical rivals, the Lakers, in the 2008 NBAFinals, winning the series in Game 6, in a rout on their home courtwith a raucous, concert like atmosphere. Along the victory paraderoute, Paul Pierce smoked a cigar — as a tribute to legendaryformer Celtics Coach Red Auerbach. In a city now defined by awealth of championships, "The Big Three" joined the club. MichaelHolley, the premiere chronicler of Boston sports, brings theirstory to life with countless untold stories and behind-the-scenesdetails — another bestselling tome for New England and sports fansacross the country.