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Doc Rivers on Paul Pierce: ‘He’s the sneakiest athlete in the league’

Posted By Paul Flannery On March 17, 2011 @ 2:52 pm In General | 2 Comments

This has been an ongoing, and underrated, part of the Celtics [1] season, but Paul Pierce [2] has been finishing at the rim at a 72.4 percent clip [3]. To put that in perspective, that percentage ranks fourth among NBA small forwards [4] and is a slight tick ahead of LeBron James [5], who admittedly gets there more often.

For most of the season Pierce has quietly gone about his business, but in recent weeks he has been executing highlight-film poster dunks on players ranging from Kris Humphries to Carlos Delfino to the entire Clipper frontline and extending into Wednesday night’s dunk on Roy Hibbert [6]. (Reds Army has the video highlights [7]).

While Pierce doesn’t fit the mold of a high-flyer, this doesn’t come as a surprise to Celtics coach Doc Rivers [8].

“I told you this years ago when I first got here. I used to get so pissed when we played the Celtics because I used to think this non-athletic guy keeps beating us,” Rivers said. “Then when you coach him you realize he’€™s a super athlete. He just plays at a pace [where] he doesn’€™t show it. He’€™s the sneakiest athlete in the league.”

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URL to article: http://greenstreet.weei.com/sports/boston/basketball/celtics/2011/03/17/doc-rivers-on-paul-pierce-hes-the-sneakiest-athlete-in-the-league/

URLs in this post:

[1] Celtics: http://media.weei.com/basketball/boston-celtics.htm

[2] Paul Pierce: http://media.weei.com/basketball/paul-pierce.htm

[3] finishing at the rim at a 72.4 percent clip: http://www.hoopdata.com/player.aspx?name=Paul%20Pierce

[4] ranks fourth among NBA small forwards: http://www.hoopdata.com/shotstats.aspx?team=%25&type=pg&posi=SF&yr=2011&gp=40&mins=30

[5] LeBron James: http://media.weei.com/basketball/lebron-james.htm

[6] Roy Hibbert: http://media.weei.com/basketball/roy-hibbert.htm

[7] Reds Army has the video highlights: http://www.redsarmy.com/home/2011/03/the-paul-pierce-body-count-gets-a-few-dunks-longer.html

[8] Doc Rivers: http://media.weei.com/basketball/doc-rivers.htm

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